Former Brazilian president Itamar Franco dies aged 81

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Itamar Franco was President between 1992 and 1995

The former President of Brazil, Itamar Franco, has died at the age of 81. Franco died at the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo. The cause of death was announced as complications from leukemia. Franco officially became President of Brazil in December 1992 and held the role until January 1995.

Dilma Rousseff, the current President of Brazil has announced seven days of mourning in honour of Franco. She said in a statement that "[i]t was with great sadness that I received the news about the death of Senator and ex-President Itamar Franco. The nation’s leader at a crucial moment in our recent history, President Itamar will be remembered for an exemplary career of political honesty.”

Franco was elected as the vice president for Fernando Collor de Mello in 1990 and took over the presidential office in October 1992 when Collor faced impeachment proceedings over corruption. He officially became President in December. During his time in office he faced a financial crisis with hyper-inflation. His choice of finance minister, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, was credited with stabilising the country's economy.

At the time of his death Franco was still serving as a senator in Minas Gerais.