29. Apr, 2011 by Natalia Moreno Rigollot
On Friday 15th April, the former President of Brazil, Luis Inácio Lula da Silva visited Telefónica´s Headquarters, Distrito C, in Madrid. On this occasion Telefónica awarded to him the Golden Medal of TISA for his support to the development of new electronic communications in Brazil. This is the first time that this recognition is offered to somebody not belonging to the company.
I had the chance to listen to his passionate discourse, which was full of positive energy and good advice. President “Lula” (Lula was his nickname, a diminutive of “Luis”, but formally added to his real name in 1982…) first quickly described his childhood as the last one of 7 sisters and brothers, with little basic resources but with clear views on what needs to be changed. He had no time and possibility to study and after different jobs, being a worker in a metallurgical industry, he became a member of the labour union.
After fruitless efforts to change politics of various Brazilian Governments, he decided to get into politics himself and ran various times for presidency. Even if that was no easy thing to achieve and took some time to reach, he achieved it in 2002, as everybody knows! A labour unionist with no university studies obtained his “first diploma as the President of his own country”! What an achievement! He explained that since then, he had a very clear vision what he had to do: to lead a very diverse and large country with 190 million people and especially not govern for the minority, but for the overall public good, especially when more than 22% of the population had been living in poverty.
He said that this achievement was possible because he “could feel with his heart” – not only with his brain- what should be done in terms of access to culture, access to education, access to basic needs, access to jobs and ways of living, but at the same time improving the economic performance of Brazil and decreasing its level of debt. “I recovered pride for the Brazilians. Now they are proud of their country and this is visible in all the areas. I am myself the outcome of a country that believes in itself and this is key for the future of the country”. He assured that even if a lot remains to be done after those 8 years of Presidency, Brazil is currently living its best time and those investing in Brazil are buying a winning ticket of lottery for the future.
“The 21st Century must be for Brazil, for Latin America and Africa, and we have to take care of people, this is the basis”, he explained. Lula da Silva, an amazing personality, a fantastic and passionate communicator, with strong beliefs and moral standards, who has been able to apply them during his mandate and who has transformed his country into a powerful and promising economy for the future. Thank you for your inspiring thoughts and words, Mister Lula!