Brazil: Lula receives a first dose of vaccine

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BRASILIA | Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva received a first dose of the coronavirus vaccine on Saturday, and he called on the population to “avoid gatherings” as the country faces a second particularly virulent epidemic wave.

• Read also: All the developments of the pandemic

“I received the vaccine […] CoronaVac […]. In 14 to 28 days, I will receive the second dose, ”the 75-year-old former head of state said in a video posted on social media. Lula received the injection in Sao Bernardo do Campo, on the outskirts of Sao Paulo.

“I could be much happier if there were vaccines for everyone,” he added.

On Wednesday, speaking for the first time in public since regaining his political rights, the former president sharply criticized the calamitous management of the coronavirus pandemic – which has killed more than 275,000 in Brazil – by the far-right president Jair Bolsonaro, lambasting the government’s “foolish decisions”.

“All people who are forced to work, who cannot stay at home, must be vaccinated, it is the government’s duty to guarantee vaccines,” the former trade unionist, founder of the Workers’ Party, added on Saturday (PT ).

Jair Bolsonaro has not ceased, since the appearance of the coronavirus, to minimize the pandemic. He questioned the effectiveness of the vaccines and said he would not be vaccinated.

“We all have the obligation to fight negationism, to fight against these people who do not believe in vaccines, who tell nonsense to Brazilian civil society,” continued Lula, who also called on Brazilians to “avoid gatherings »To fight against contamination.

After the return of the former head of state on the political scene, Jair Bolsonaro, who has multiplied public appearances with his face uncovered, appeared with a mask during an official ceremony. He praised the “seriousness and responsibility” of his government in the face of the health crisis, before promulgating a law facilitating the acquisition of vaccines.

On March 8, a Brazilian Supreme Court judge overturned all of the corruption convictions against Lula for technicality, making him again eligible to face Jair Bolsonaro in the 2022 presidential election.

After the rejection of an appeal filed Friday by the prosecution, the Supreme Court of Brazil must rule in plenary session on the annulment of these sentences.