Amidst a clash with São Paulo’s governor João Dória, President Jair Bolsonaro was also attacked by his ceremonial sash, which continually attempted to trip him up. Last week, he rejected the announced purchase of 46 million Chinese vaccine doses potentially effective against COVID-19. Although a Health Ministry document explicitly confirmed the original intent to buy the vaccine, which is developed by Sinovac in collaboration with the Brazilian Butantan Institute, Bolsonaro told the media the protocol would be canceled.
João Dória is a potential candidate for the 2022 presidential elections, and some experts affirm that the clash “had little to do with the virus and was more a way to hurt Doria.” Political analysts at XP Investimentos, a Brazilian investment firm, predict that the polarized debate will negatively affect Brazil’s economy if the matter concerning the vaccines is not addressed transparently. Instead of evaluating the potential efficacy of the vaccine, the scenario is being used to portray political views.