Brazil’s electorate has swung the country back towards the left by voting back into power former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and turned their backs on far-right incumbent Jair Bolsonaro in the 2022 presidential election.

Brazilian media outlets characterised this election as being particularly bitter and divisive, with two candidates on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Mr Lula da Silva secured 50.9 per cent of the vote despite Mr Bolsonaro’s confidence that voters will opt for the continuity of his leadership.

Mr Lula’s victory is viewed as all the more remarkable considering he was legally prohibited from running in the 2018 election as he was in jail and banned from standing for office after he was found guilty of receiving a bribe from a Brazilian construction firm in return for contracts with Brazil’s state oil company, Petrobras.

The newly elected president, who leads the country’s workers party, spent 580 days in jail and was released when his conviction was annulled, allowing him to return back to politics.

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