Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro
PIC: AFP

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has continued to downplay the COVID-19 situation with actions considered frivolous, such as riding a jet ski, as the pandemic has claimed 10,656 lives in the country and infected 156,061 others.

Ignoring the grim stats, Bolsonaro on Saturday rode a jet ski on a lake in Brasilia and took photos with his supporters, reports Efe news.

He had initially planned to hold a barbecue celebration for some 30 guests, but due to a barrage of criticism, the President cancelled the gathering and opted to ride the jet ski instead.

Brazil is already the sixth country in the world with the most deaths, behind the US, UK, Italy, Spain and France, and has surpassed the 10,000 fatalities mark less than two months after the confirmation of the first on March 17.

The figures confirm the rapid expansion of the pandemic. In just 10 days the numbers doubled in the country and on April 30, 5,901 deaths were recorded.

Given the death toll, Brazil's National Congress and Supreme Court have declared three days of mourning.

According to a British scientific journal The Lancet, "perhaps the biggest threat to Brazil's COVID-19 response is its President, Jair Bolsonaro".

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