Brazilian Bolsonaro tested for Covid-19 after feeling sick


Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro watches during the inauguration ceremony of the main space operations center (COPE-P) amid the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) at the Comando de Operações Aeroespaciais on June 23, 2020 in Brasilia.Andressa Anholete | Getty Images

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who mocked the risks of coronavirus, underwent another test for Covid-19 shortly after the presidential palace said that the right-wing leader had shown symptoms consistent with the disease.Bolsonaro, 65, told supporters gathered in front of Brasilia’s presidential palace on Monday that he had been tested for the virus and that “everything was fine.”

Speaking while wearing a face mask, he also said that a separate medical examination showed that his lungs were “clean,” according to a video posted on a YouTube channel.

Brazilian news sources, including a CNN subsidiary, reported that Bolsonaro had tested positive for the virus, but this has not been verified by CNBC or officially confirmed.

A government spokesperson was not immediately available to comment when contacted by CNBC on Tuesday morning.

The presidential palace said on Monday that Bolsonaro was currently in good health, but told NBC News that he was not feeling well and that he had a fever of 38 degrees Celsius (about 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit).

Local media have reported that Bolsonaro has canceled all of its official activities until it obtains the results of its test for Covid-19. Results are expected at around 11:00 am ET on Tuesday.

“Little flu”

The President of Brazil, an ideological ally of President Donald Trump, has repeatedly downplayed the threat of the virus, dismissing the pandemic as a “little flu” and condemning state governors for imposing closures that cause job losses.

Since the start of the pandemic, Bolsonaro has ignored the recommendations of the World Health Organization, such as avoiding public gatherings, wearing face masks and maintaining social distance.

At the end of last month, he allegedly suggested during a live Facebook event that he thought he had already contracted Covid-19.

Health personnel from a medical emergency service transport Eladio Lopes, 79, Brazilian, infected with the new coronavirus, on a stretcher to be transferred on an ambulance boat from the community of Portel to a hospital in Breves, on the Marajo Island, in the State of Para, Brazil, on May 25, 2020.

Tarso Sarraf | AFP | Getty Images

More than 1.6 million people in Brazil have tested positive for the virus, with 65,487 deaths nationwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Brazil has reported by far the highest number of coronavirus cases in Latin America and is the second largest behind the United States in the world.

In March, Prime Minister Boris Johnson became the first world leader to test positive for the coronavirus. Initially, the leader of the Conservative Party continued to work in isolation but his condition worsened and he was admitted to hospital where he spent three nights in the intensive care unit. Johnson was released from hospital on April 12.

Most recently, the President of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez, was released from the hospital 16 days after being diagnosed with Covid-19.


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