8 February 2022

The acquittal of PSD General Secretary José Silvano, who was accused of having a PSD MP sign him in to parliament in his absence, features prominently in almost all outlets. PM Costa is preparing for a full week of meetings with civic organisations and political parties represented in parliament, with the exception of far-right Chega, much to André Ventura’s chagrin. A leading pulmonologist has called for the “prudent” relaxation of Covid restrictions. 

RTP, Expresso and Público all feature the acquittal of PSD General Secretary José Silvano in the “phantom attendance” case, in which MP Emilia Cerqueira is alleged to have signed Silvano into parliament twice in his absence in 2018. Silvano claims the charges were politically motivated to “tarnish the image of the PSD” even suggesting there was some coincidence between the initial accusation and the electoral calendar and that it was “too bad that the acquittal did not come before the 30th”. He adds that “every time there was an electoral event, either internal or external, the case was mentioned – first during internal PSD debates and then the general election”. DN quotes Silvano saying he is “80% sure” it was someone within the PSD that made the initial complaint, “but that those who are not 100% sure cannot accuse anyone”.

Expresso and Público report that PM Costa is beginning a week-long series of meetings with “sectors of civil society” and political parties “as part of the preparation of the next political cycle”. PM Costa announced that on 15 February he will meet with representatives of all parties with parliamentary representation, with the exception of Chega. CNN PT carries an interview with Chega leader André Ventura, who accuses PM Costa of showing “worrying signs” at the beginning of his new mandate by his decision to “ignore the almost 400,000 citizens” who voted for the right-wing party.

In an interview with DN, leading pulmonologist Raquel Duarte, who has supported the Covid measures introduced so far, says she now believes it is time to “ease measures, but with prudence”, adding it is necessary to keep monitoring the disease and vaccinating the most vulnerable, while noting there are measures that can be changed, such as selective instead of mass testing and ending the requirement to wear a mask in outdoor spaces.

Dinheiro Vivo and Negócios both feature a report on the Portuguese company KEME Energy, which creates self-consumption green energy projects, and its plan to lease a 4.8 hectare plot of land in Sines where it will invest €5.2 million in establishing a 2.52MW hydrogen production plant generating 160 tonnes of green energy per year.

Expresso and Público note Correios de Portugal (CTT) has signed a new concession contract for the provision of the universal postal service until 31 December 2028. The new agreement introduces a number of changes, with the national communications authority Anacom losing some of its powers and CTT being allowed to avoid the imposition of price cuts due to its failure to meet quality targets on the proviso the company increases its investment in service provision.

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