Brazil marked 50 days without an official health minister on Saturday as the coronation pandemic, which has infected more than 1.5 million people and killed at least 63,000, continues to occupy the country.
The post was temporarily filled by Army General Eduardo Pazzuello, who has no medical experience, and was resigned on May 15 by the last Minister of Health, Nelson Teich.
Teich, who has been in office for less than a month, has been criticized by President Jair Bolsonaro for “being too timid in trying to reopen the economy and support the use of chloroquine”. Teich did not comment on his resignation.
Teich’s predecessor, Luiz Henrique Mandetta, who advocated social distance measures and the use of a mask, was fired by Bolsonaro.
Bolsonaro, who has often defied the social distance guidelines suggested by most health experts and dismissed the virus as “small flu,” has been widely criticized for degrading the severity of the virus.
On Friday, Bolsonaro vetoed parts of a law imposing a public face mask during the pandemic. The use of a mask in shopping malls, shops, religious temples, educational institutions and other closed places where people gather will no longer be mandatory, but individual states and municipalities can impose these measures.
Brazil has the second highest number of corona deaths and deaths worldwide after the United States.