As the supporters of defeated Presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro continue to block highways with their trucks in protest of his loss, the Brazilian Supreme Court has ordered the roads to be cleared on Tuesday as a potential stand-off ensues between the government and the protesters.

The Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that the Federal Highway Police needs to “immediately take all measures” to clear the “illicitly obstructed roads” of the truckers protesting Bolsonaro’s loss, charging a penalty of the equivalent of $19,440 for every hour that a truck is part of the blockade, according to The Guardian.

The Federal Highway Police, many of whom have openly supported Bolsonaro and encouraged the trucker protest, have cleared up over 330 roadblocks since the order came out, with some videos showing them spraying the protestors with pepper spray as a way of dragging them out of the area.

In the past week, the Federal Highway Police has been accused of interfering with the voting process by putting up their own roadblocks in areas where Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has a large amount of support in an attempt to scare and suppress votes in the area.

Many of the protestors have heavily disrupted the supply chain in Brazil due to the protest, with the fuel and food distribution firmly in their hands as they block the main road to the Port of Paranagua, Reuters reported.

Highways and roads in over 200 locations are still being blocked by the protestors, with fuel distribution said to be in a “a critical situation” while food exports have been unable to get to the ports in the country. Meat suppliers have also stopped slaughtering animals, giving the country up to four days before their meat supply becomes critically low.

The protestors are reportedly calling for, among other things, military intervention to keep Bolsonaro in his position as President after the resounding electoral loss he suffered against President-elect Lula da Silva on Sunday.

While Bolsonaro’s administration is reportedly starting the process of transitioning to a Lula government, the outgoing President himself has refused to concede defeat, and has said that the protests are a show of how dissatisfied many are “with the electoral process”.

Bolsonaro Trucker Protests Rep. Pic
As truckers and supporters of defeated Presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro continue their protest of blocking up roads in Brazil, the Supreme Court on Tuesday has ordered the roads to be cleared up by members of the Highway Police. This is a representational image. Brian Stalter/Unsplash.

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