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Hairy mess

BRASILIA (AFP) – The president of Brazil’s senate, Renan Calheiros, will repay the cost of using an air force jet for a trip during which he reportedly had a hair transplant, his spokesman said on Tuesday.

“The president is to repay the costs of this flight. He is waiting for the air force to calculate the bill before doing so,” he said. “I don’t know if the president has had a hair transplant.”

The Folha de Sao Paulo newspaper had reported that Calheiros had flown 1,980 kilometers from Brasilia to Recife to have 10,000 hairs implanted while purportedly on a business trip.

And the paper recalled that he had also used an air force jet to travel to a wedding in the northeastern city of Salvador, resulting in his having to pick up a tab of 32,000 reais ($14,000).

In a country where many see the political class as corrupt, Calheiros says that Congress has cut spending in response to the public protests which swept the country last June.

In June, when protests erupted against corruption, Calheiros was one of the main symbolic targets of thousands of demonstrators, who demanded he leave office.