Transparency in the exercise of political office is one of the goals of the António Costa government program and one of President Marcelo Rebelo de Souza’s priorities in speeches and speeches. But after a month of questions – with dozens of phone calls and email exchanges – neither the Government, nor the President of the Republic, nor the Assembly of the Republic, nor the Armed Forces are willing to speak. How much is it bias five government figures in Qatar during the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Some were falconothers in commercial flights, but no one wants to say how much the trips cost. The responses of the entities to the Observer are either witty or vague, like the responses of Josef K. in Franz Kafka’s fictional work The Trial.
There were supposed to be four of them, but five rulers went to Qatar: the President of the Republic Marcelo Rebelo de SouzaPrime Minister Antonio Costa (these two are on the plane Falcon 50), President of the Assembly of the Republic Augusto Santos Silvadeputy Minister Ana Catarina Mendez and Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, Joao Paulo Correia (last three on commercial flights). Accommodation for all was paid for by the contested state of Qatar, but the flights were supported by the Portuguese state.
So let’s move on to the non-response story, which is also a guide to the lack of transparency. On December 9, 2022, almost a month ago, the Observer sent the first email to the Air Force asking how much it costs for statesmen to travel on the Falcon to Qatar.
In response, the representative of this branch of the armed forces, Colonel Manuel Bernardo da Costa, began a game of pressure: “Questions related to travel His Exas, President of the Republic, President of the Assembly of the Republic (PAR), Prime Minister (PM) or any other authority shall be addressed President of the Republic or to relevant offices“.