Carlos Neder (1953-2021)

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By JOSÉ CLÓVIS M. LIMA*

Tribute to the great fighter

The death of Carlos Néder is a very sad event for his family, friends and all those who know the value of a public man, in the classic asepsis of the word, and for a community so lacking in ethical references, even more so in these times when we live. The departure of a person so committed to the causes most dear to the democratic field, like him, leaves us with a huge void.

However, as Mário Schenberg would say, emptiness does not exist. By bringing research in the field of physics closer to studies of Hindu philosophies and debates in the field of aesthetics, the great Brazilian physicist developed speculations that led to the discovery of neutrinos, an energy that permeates the universe and permeates time and fills empty spaces. . Néder, is one of those forces of nature, which will permeate the lived time and the spaces in which he acted, just like the neutrinos that cross the universe. He has impacted us and will continue to imprint his light in some way.

Carlos Néder played an important role in the election of Luiza Erundina as mayor of São Paulo, in 1988. He was the municipal secretary of health in that administration (1990-1992), becoming one of those responsible, along with Erundina, for building a primary network of health care, which had popular participation and control as one of its pillars, the starting point of a series of actions aimed at strengthening the SUS, its main flag of struggle.

Néder participated in the founding of the Workers' Party. In municipal management, he was able to put into practice what was foreseen in the party's program, such as the participatory budget and the strengthening of municipal health councils.

He remained faithful to this model implemented in municipal management for the rest of his life. In his political activities, he stood out for his fight against the veiled privatization of the municipal health network through the so-called Social Organizations. Subsequently, he was elected to positions in parliament: four times councilor in the city of São Paulo and twice state deputy. In his mandates in the City Council and in the Legislative Assembly, in addition to combating OS, he was notable for his work in the constitution of the Parliamentary Front in defense and support of Public Universities and State Research Institutes.

During his legislative mandates, Néder contributes to the organization of Coletivo Cidadania Ativa. It is a grouping where citizens – regardless of the color of their party affiliation – meet to discuss the issues that most impact daily life, such as health problems, high prices, lack of jobs and income, and many others. The results of these collective debates, in the form of propositions, were taken to the various forums where Néder acted, whether in Parliament, in the state executive of the Workers' Party or with constituted authorities.

I remember, with great affection, that when I mentioned to Néder the fact that my mother-in-law – a widow and an INSS pensioner, who earns a minimum wage – had received an exorbitant bill from ENEL during the COVID pandemic, he promptly called the agency’s presidency. Consumer Protection, required inspection for all cases, a few thousand.

A unique public figure, Néder belonged to the restricted number of those who are considered a beacon and an ethical reference for all of us who cherish his coexistence and friendship, for the party to which he was affiliated and an active member and for society in general.

*José Clovis M. Lima is a civil servant and participant of the Cidadania Ativa collective.

 

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