President Jair Bolsonaro catches the 'little flu' brutally ravaging Brazil
Jair Bolsonaro has Covid-19.
The populist politician stood centimetres away from journalists as he told them the news on Tuesday.
He said he was taking hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug also touted by US President Donald Trump.
The drug was recently dropped from the large “Solidarity trial” after data showed it was not effective.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns Americans against taking the drug as it is ineffective against Covid-19 and may lead to “serious heart rhythm problems and other safety issues, including blood and lymph system disorders, kidney injuries, and liver problems and failure.”
Bolsonaro removed his mask – which he wears because a judge compelled him to do so - towards the end of the interview and smiled as he said, “You can see from my face that I am well.”
Later in the day, Bolsonaro shared a video of himself downing what he said was his third dose of hydroxychloroquine.
Bolsonaro has tried for months to downplay the severity of the pandemic, calling Covid-19 “little flu” and refusing to wear a mask or adhere to social distancing.
He has repeatedly defied experts and fought attempts to mandate mask-wearing and other measures by state officials to fight the pandemic.
Brazil, the world’s second-worst hit country after the United States, has lost 66 868 people to Covid-19 so far.
It has 1.67 million confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 45 305 new cases on Tuesday.
Refilwe Moloto interviewed international correspondent Adam Gilchrist.
He has a high fever and feeling unwell. He’s pretending he’s fine…Adam Gilchrist - international correspondent
On the weekend he was meeting with a whole bunch of Brazilian Ministers, the American ambassador – they were having a Fourth of July thing – not a mask in sight, arms around each other, lots of photos…Adam Gilchrist - international correspondent
Hydroxychloroquine does absolutely nothing to hinder the coronavirus. It’s also dangerous to take it willy-nilly…Adam Gilchrist - international correspondent
His decision to block lockdowns and social distancing has been massively controversial in a country that’s been massively hit by this virus.Adam Gilchrist - international correspondent
Listen to the interview in the audio below.
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