sexta-feira, 10 de outubro de 2008

Olivier Pascal-Moussellard - jornalista da revista Télérama (França)

(a letter of support for joaquim ribeiro)
Dear Editor

My name is Olivier Pascal-Moussellard. I am a Senior Reporter for one of the most respected weekly magazines in France, with more than 2 millions readers.

I met Joaquim Ribeiro a few months ago, through common friends. My wife and myself had a chance to visit Brazil in April, and from the very first minute, I knew what kind of person Dr Ribeiro is : a Doctor who is dedicating his life to the well being of his patients and the progress of science. I had a good reason to see it right away : I have a surgeon in my own family, a person I love and respect more than anybody else for his dedication to his job.

I spent a week at Dr Ribeiro’s house in Rio. During that week, day after day, I was a witness of the dedication this man gives to his job. Not only in our conversations about health and medicine – we spoke a lot about the improvements France and Brasil could bring to their « health systems ». In fact I was a direct witness of the life of Dr Ribeiro. What I saw was passion, honesty and sacrifice. My job, as a senior reporter gave me many oportunities, in the last 20 years, to meet with people who « exagerate » their actions to make them look more beautiful than they really are. But in Dr Ribeiro’s behavior, I saw only the best a person can give – which is his time, his forces and his brain. All this, at the expense of his family. I witnessed his (very) late arrivals, heard his (very) early departures, and so many of these phone calls that he received or gave during our conversations, to make sure a patient was well.

When I learnt about Dr Ribeiro’s indictment, I was hurt and pained. As a journalist, I must say that I am shocked by the lack of seriousness that some Brazilian media have showed in covering this story. There are some rules in our profession. When a person is indicted, it is imperative that al the facts that are reproached to this person be checked and proved – or taken with distance and extreme cautiousness. It is also imperative, in a true democracy, that media give a chance to talk to both sides – and I must say that the voice of the defense, in Dr Ribeiro’s case, was not heard in a just and fair way. Finally, when covering a story which may have such serious consequences on the life and the honor of a man, it is absolutely necessary to look at the facts that the Justice institution make available. In Dr Ribeiro’s case, they are so unsubstanciated and so uncorrobated that it looks like a parody of Justice. We will see – and we will check with great attention – if in the next few weeks and months, some objectivity is finally brought to this situation. It is not only the honor of a man that is threatened here. It is a country’s medical system that is showing its failure to stay away from the politics of fear and false accusations. It is, very simply, the Justice ability to protect citizens against the people who try to destroy them. At least, in a true democracy.

Olivier Pascal-Moussellard, Senior reporter, France

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