Bolsonaro vetoes payments for health staff incapacitated by virus

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany speaks during a press briefing in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House, in Washington, DC on August 4, 2020. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP)

Brazilian President has vetoed plans to pay a one-time sum of 50,000 reais (9,400 dollars) to health professionals who were left unable to work after becoming ill with Covid-19, according to an announcement published in an official gazette on Tuesday.

The president argued that the legislation, which Congress has approved, was unconstitutional and not in the public interest, as it would create an ongoing expense during the pandemic, according to news portal G1.

has confirmed more than 2.7 million novel coronavirus infections and over 94,600 deaths, the highest worldwide after the United States.

But Bolsonaro has downplayed the seriousness of the pandemic and advocated keeping the economy open, despite contracting the virus himself. He announced his recovery more than a week ago.

Congress now needs to analyze the veto and decide whether to accept it, G1 said.

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