Brazil’s Leader Tests Positive For Coronavirus After Treating Virus Like A Hoax
Jair Bolsonaro, the president of Brazil, has tested positive for the coronavirus, after months of downplaying the seriousness of the illness as he sought to return his country to normal, according to the Washington Post.
- Bolsonaro’s weak handling of the pandemic in his country has resulted in it becoming the site of the second-worst coronavirus outbreak in the world, after the United States. In a national address in March, he minimized the effects of the virus, saying:
“In my particular case, with my history as an athlete, if I were infected by the virus, I wouldn’t need to worry. I wouldn’t feel anything or, if very affected, it would be like a little flu or little cold.”
- Bolsonaro is at least the fourth world leader to test positive for the virus, after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Guinea-Bissau’s Prime Minister Nuno Gomes Nabiam and Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez.
- Concerns over Bolsonaro’s covid status have followed him since March when his communication secretary tested positive for coronavirus after President Trump hosted Bolsonaro, the communication secretary, and a number of others for dinner at Mar-a-lago.
- At least a dozen members of his presidential envoy tested positive before Bolsonaro, who claimed he tested negative twice, released his positive test results.
- The public health leadership in Brazil has been rocky, as Bolsonaro is on his third health minister since the pandemic began. The lack of a coordinated federal strategy coupled with reopenings across the country has led to fears of a worsening of the outbreak in the country.