Rio de Janeiro governor tests positive for coronavirus

Rio de Janeiro Gov. Wilson Witzel said Tuesday, April 14, 2020, that he has tested positive for the new coronavirus. File photo – Silvia Izquierdo – AP

HAVANA TIMES – Governor of Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro Wilson Witzel has tested positive for the new coronavirus, he announced Tuesday, reported dpa news

“I haven’t felt well since Friday, had a fever, a sore throat, lost my sense of smell and took the test,” the 52-year-old said in a video on Twitter. “Today I got the results.”

He said he now feels better and wants to continue working.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has played down the virus and dismissed recommendations for social distancing.

However Witzel, along with Sao Paulo governor Joao Doria, ordered restrictive measures to fight the disease pandemic and was harshly criticised by Bolsonaro for doing so.

Rio de Janeiro, the country’s third most populous state, went into isolation on Witzel’s orders, closing schools and shops, limiting air and land traffic and keeping people confined to their homes.

Witzel again urged residents to socially distance on Tuesday. “The disease makes no distinction and is spreading fast,” he said.

In the state so far 3,410 people have been infected with the virus, while 224 people have died.


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