COVID19: Bolsonaro called biggest threat to Brazil's coronavirus response

COVID19: Bolsonaro called biggest threat to Brazil's coronavirus response

A leading medical journal has described President Jair Bolsonaro as "perhaps the most important threat" to Brazil's ability to successfully fight the coronavirus pandemic, even as the country reported its highest daily price .

In an article , The Lancet said Bolsonaro's disregard for and flouting of lockdown measures is sowing confusion across Brazil, which is quickly emerging as a hotspot for COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

On Friday, Brazil's Ministry of Health registered 10,222 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 751 related deaths, a daily high. That brought the entire of confirmed cases within the country to 145,328 and deaths to 9,897.

The Lancet said Bolsonaro was becoming increasingly hamstrung by political crisis following his sacking last month of popular Minister of Health Luiz Henrique Mandetta after a disagreement over measures to tackle the pandemic and therefore the resignation of Minister of Justice Sergio Moro. 

"The challenge is ultimately political, requiring continuous engagement by Brazilian society as an entire . Brazil as a rustic must close to offer a transparent answer to the 'So what?' by its President. He must drastically jibe or must be subsequent to travel ," the editorial by British medical journal said.

In response to a journalist's question last week about the record number of deaths from coronavirus, the far-right president said: "So what? I'm sorry, but what does one want me to do?"

On Friday, the president said he planned to possess 30 friends over to the presidential palace for a barbecue. Later within the day, he joked that he may extend the invitation to thousands more, including political supporters and members of the press.

The president, who has mentioned the coronavirus because the "little flu" and interacted with supporters without a mask , has argued that the economic fallout of lockdown measures would be deadlier than the virus itself.

He has also actively encouraged people to defy physical distancing measures put in situ by state governors, calling on people to return to figure and participate in large gatherings despite the growing number of known infections and deaths.


A report by Imperial College London published on Friday showed that "the epidemic isn't yet controlled and can still grow" in Brazil, in stark contrast to parts of Europe and Asia, where enforced lockdowns have had success.

"While the Brazilian epidemic remains relatively nascent on a national scale, our results suggest that further action is required to limit spread and stop health system overload," the Imperial College report said.

In its editorial, The Lancet outlined challenges faced by Brazil. About 13 million Brazilians sleep in shanty towns where hygiene recommendations and physical distancing are near impossible to follow.

The country's Indigenous population was also under "severe threat" even before the COVID-19 outbreak thanks to the govt turning a blind eye to or maybe encouraging illegal mining and logging within the Amazon rainforest.

"These loggers and miners now risk bringing COVID-19 to remote populations," it said. Most of Brazil's 27 state and district governments are taking the threat of the virus more seriously than Bolsonaro.

On Friday, the govt of Sao Paulo , Brazil's most populous state, extended mandatory quarantine orders through to May 31. that they had been scheduled to expire on May 11.

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