SAO PAULO: A candidate running for the Amazonia state assembly in northern Brazil under the monicker Osama Bin Laden was detained during Sunday´s vote for illegal campaigning outside the local polls, electoral officials said.
´Bin Laden´, real name Manoel Nunes de Assis, was standing for the tiny centrist National Labor Party (PTN).
Clad in a tunic similar to that worn by the Al-Qaeda mastermind killed in a US raid in Pakistan three years ago, Nunes was arrested in regional capital, Manaus, as he urged voters to cast their ballots while handing out bottles of water, and hauled off to the regional electoral court for questioning.
“He was stood in the doorway on the pretext of selling water while approaching people and asking for votes,” the G1 web portal quoted electoral magistrate Henrique Veiga as saying.
Electoral rules allow candidates to stand under whatever name they choose and this year has seen an imaginative crop, including Wonder Woman and Rambo, while a handful also stood as Barack Obama.Nunes, one of three candidates named Bin Laden standing in Sunday´s presidential and legislative elections, faces being removed from the race if he is found to have violated election rules.
The Superior Electoral Court (TSE) had detained 551 people in all, including 55 candidates, for various indiscretions nationwide an hour before polls closed at 2000 GMT in most of Brazil´s 27 states.
In the last national elections four years ago, a Sao Paulo clown named Tiririca (Grumpy) ran for Congress on the campaign slogan “It can´t get any worse.
“He won the most votes of any congressional candidate in the country, 1.3 million, and had to learn to write his name to start his new job.He´s also standing again.