The President of the 2nd Most COVID19 Affected Country Tests Positive


  • After months of denying the seriousness of the pandemic and brushing aside protective measures, Mr. Bolsonaro felt symptoms of Covid-19.
  • President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil, who has railed against social distancing measures and repeatedly downplayed the threat of the coronavirus as the epidemic in his country became the second-worst in the world, said Tuesday that he, too, had been infected.
  • Mr. Bolsonaro fell ill two days after he and a handful of his ministers attended a Fourth of July luncheon at the residence of Todd Chapman, the American ambassador in Brazil.
  • Mr. Bolsonaro and other attendees sat shoulder-to-shoulder, embracing with no masks.

A recently published article in the Newyork Times reveals that the president of the Brazil has been affected by covid 19 and under treatment.

President Jair Bolsonaro experienced fatigue and fever

Speaking to journalists outside the presidential palace in Brasília shortly after noon on Tuesday, Mr. Bolsonaro, said he had taken a test on Monday after experiencing fatigue, muscle pain and a fever.

He said he was feeling “very well,” which he credited to having taken hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malaria drug he has endorsed but which studies show does not ward off the virus.

Covid-19 cases that become serious often take a turn for the worse about a week after symptoms emerge.

No social distancing and use of mask 

Even as several of Mr. Bolsonaro’s aides have tested positive for the virus in recent months, the president has often eschewed precautions, boasting of how his athletic background would protect him and encouraging his supporters to flout lockdown measures imposed by city and state officials.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Britain also rebuffed social distancing advice and resisted lockdown measures, though he was never as dismissive as Mr. Bolsonaro.

But after he became seriously ill with Covid and spent several days in a hospital, he appeared to take the danger more seriously, and made a point of praising overburdened health care workers.

Brazil’s approach

The president’s illness will do little to alter Brazil’s approach unless he experiences serious complications, politicians and public experts predicted.

The country is now in the process of reopening, with Brazilians packing bars, beaches and public spaces.

No contrition from the President

Mr. Bolsonaro did not express contrition for his handling of the pandemic, and doubled down on his assertion that the virus poses little risk to healthy people.

He characterized the diagnosis as a predictable outcome of a leadership style that requires him to be among the people.

“I am the president, I have to be on the front lines of the fight,” he said, comparing the virus to “rain, which is going to get to you.”

“Thank you to all those who prayed for me and rooted for me,” he said. “I’m fine, thank God. Those who have criticized me, that’s fine, they can continue to criticize me.”

After taking questions from journalists, Mr. Bolsonaro stepped back a few feet, removed the mask he had been wearing and smiled.

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Source: The New York Times


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