Brazil Records Over 90,000 New COVID Cases In One Day | News on the coronavirus pandemic
Brazilian President Bolsonaro faces increasing pressure as coronavirus infections and deaths continue to rise.
Brazil has reported a one-day record of 90,303 new COVID-19 cases, as the South American nation continues to face an increase in coronavirus infections and deaths.
The Department of Health said on Wednesday that 2,648 more deaths had been recorded in the previous 24 hours, bringing the country’s total to more than 282,000 deaths – just behind the United States.
A day earlier, Brazil had recorded 2,841 more deaths – a single-day record.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro faces increasing pressure to bring the growing pandemic under control as public discontent with his handling of the crisis grows.
Earlier this week, the far-right leader appointed a new health minister – the country’s fourth since the pandemic began last year.
Marcelo Queiroga, cardiologist, replaces Eduardo Pazuello, an army general who had been criticized for having no medical experience.
Bolsonaro, a COVID-19 skeptic who avoided public health measures such as mask wearing and social distancing, earlier this week mentionned Brazil is entering a “more aggressive phase” in its fight against the virus.
This was echoed on Wednesday by Queiroga, who said the president had promised him “autonomy” in matters of pandemic policy.
“We plan to reduce the number of deaths with two main points: social distancing policies to reduce the spread of the virus and the expansion of the capacity of our hospitals,” Queiroga said at a press conference.
“We believe in research, in science,” he also said.
Meanwhile, a new survey has found that most Brazilians disapprove of Bolsonaro’s response to the COVID-19 crisis.
The Datafolha poll released Tuesday evening showed that 54% of Brazilians view the president’s handling of the pandemic as bad or horrible.
A recent decision by a Supreme Court judge to overturn the corruption convictions of former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has created more pressure on Bolsonaro as he opened the door for Lula to run for president next year.
Lula criticized his rival for the crisis, telling Brazilians to avoid rallies and not to listen to Bolsonaro, whom he called a “fool”.
The rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine in Brazil has also been marred by delays, fueling public anger.
On Wednesday, Bolsonaro said he was “happy” to see protests in Brazil against social distancing measures.
Protests have taken place in recent days after some local and regional authorities imposed lockdown orders in an attempt to stem the spread of the virus.
“Logically, I was happy,” Bolsonaro said in remarks posted on social media. “They show that people are alive… we want our freedom, we want the world to respect our constitution.”