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11 Oct, 2021 14:43

‘Why a vaccine passport?’ Brazil president Bolsonaro claims he was barred from football game because he has not had jabs (VIDEO)

‘Why a vaccine passport?’ Brazil president Bolsonaro claims he was barred from football game because he has not had jabs (VIDEO)

Brazil president Jair Bolsonaro has again questioned Covid vaccines after claiming that he was denied entry to a football match because he had not been jabbed.

Vaccine skeptic Bolsonaro, who is currently being investigated by the Brazilian Senate for his handling of the pandemic in a country where there have been more than 590,000 Covid-related deaths, wanted to watch top-flight side Santos face Gremio on Sunday while he was reportedly on holiday in Sao Paulo.

Instead, the controversial head of state was filmed outside the stadium saying that he had not been allowed in because he could not show proof that he has been vaccinated.

"Why a vaccine passport?" the 66-year-old was quoted as asking, speaking after he became the only G20 leader to claim they had not been vaccinated at a UN general assembly summit in New York last month.

"I wanted to watch Santos now and they said I needed to be vaccinated. Why should that be?"

Elite Brazilian clubs were given the go-ahead last week to fill 30% of the available seats in stadia in a country that has been ravaged by the virus.

Brazilian Football Confederation protocols require people attending matches to be fully vaccinated and recently tested.

Health concerns around football and Covid flared up during the September international fixtures, when a match between Brazil and Argentina at Sao Paulo's Neo Quimica Arena had to be abandoned after less than ten minutes.

Health officials entered the pitch to accost four Premier League players who were accused of failing to adhere to coronavirus-related rules.

Also on rt.com Blame game: FIFA launches disciplinary proceedings against Brazil and Argentina after World Cup qualifier fiasco

In June, Bolsonaro was criticized after Brazil agreed to host the Copa America tournament at short notice, deputizing after Colombia stepped aside because of social unrest and Argentina followed suit as a result of its Covid crisis.

Bolsonaro tested positive for the virus in June and has insisted that his antibody levels remain high, adding that he would be the last person to be vaccinated.

"We support the vaccination efforts," he told the general assembly, pledging to back people who want to receive treatment in Brazil.

"However, my administration has not supported a vaccine or health passport or any other vaccine-related obligation."

A 92nd-minute goal by Wagner Leonardo gave 16th-placed Santos an important victory in Bolsonaro's absence, moving them five points ahead of their second-bottom visitors.

Also on rt.com ‘FARCE’: Brazil vs Argentina World Cup qualifier ABANDONED after authorities storm pitch ‘to deport players who didn’t quarantine’