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Brazilian president hopes chief of staff can be successor

BRAZILIAN President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said yesterday that his Chief of Staff Dilma Rousseff will represent the ruling Workers' Party to run for the Brazilian president in 2010.

Lula made the announcement during a meeting with some 100 members from the International Council of the World Social Forum in Belem in northern Brazil, according to sources with the meeting.

"If the next forum is in 2010, I will attend it as the (Brazilian) president, (and) if it is in 2011, it will be Dilma," Lula said.

It was not the first time that Lula has expressed his preference for Rousseff as his successor. Since 2007, the president has constantly recommended Rousseff for the job in a bid to boost her popularity.

Lula is unable to run for another term of presidency in 2010 as he will have fulfilled two consecutive terms, the maximum period allowed by the Brazilian law.

Rousseff said that she was "still" not a candidate for the election, but "Brazil is ready to have a female president."

Born in 1947, Rousseff became chief-of-staff in June 2005, the first woman to take up the post. She is also chairman of the board of directors at the Brazilian oil giant Petrobras.


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