Remembering João Batista Momi 

by Laurie Kazan-Allen



Former asbestos worker and founding member of the Brazilian Association of the Asbestos-Exposed (ABREA) João Batista Momi died in Sao Paulo on October 14, 2018 from asbestosis – a disease he contracted from toxic exposures experienced over a period of 32 years at the Eternit factory in Osasco – and pulmonary complications.

Mr. Momi’s pioneering lawsuit against Eternit took 12 years at the civil court – at that time the only court which could hear claims for injuries caused by toxic occupational exposures. In 1998 he was awarded more than 150,000 reais (equivalent in 1998 to US$150,000) by Judge Alexandre David Malfatti of the 27th Civil Court of São Paulo for “reparations for moral damages and material damages for medical care and a monthly pension of a quarter of his final salary, calculated by his attorney at 1,200 reais.”1 The company appealed Malfatti's decision to three further courts. After a constitutional amendment was adopted in 2004 giving legal competence to hear these cases to the Labour Court, Mr. Momi received his compensation.


ABREA President Eliezer João de Souza (left) with João Batista Momi.

Writing about his death ABREA co-founder Fernanda Giannasi said: “The death of Sr. João Batista Momi will be deeply felt by all the ABREA family. He will never be forgotten.” I had met Mr. Momi on several occasions over the last 20 years. He was a stalwart supporter of ABREA and its members and a committed ban asbestos campaigner. His death will be mourned not only by his family and friends in Brazil but by activists all over the world committed to an asbestos-free future.

October 15, 2018


1 Kazan-Allen, L. Victory for Brazil’s Asbestos Victims. September 12, 2004.



       Home   |    Site Info   |    Site Map   |    About   |    Top↑