Donald Trump not the 1st world leader to test positive for COVID-19; others have been hit too


Johannesburg: President Donald Trump has tested positive for the coronavirus. In the process Donald Trump has joined a small group of world leaders who have been infected. Trump is 74 and his age puts him at higher risk of serious complications. Here’s a look at other leaders who have been infected.


Boris Johnson
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson Photo courtesy:

The British prime minister was the first major world leader confirmed to have COVID-19. He was moved to intensive care in April. This happened after his virus symptoms dramatically worsened a day after he was hospitalized. Initially Johnson had said he was going in for ‘routine tests’. Johnson was given oxygen but did not need a ventilator, officials said. He later expressed his gratitude to National Health Service staff for saving his life.


Jail Bolsonaro
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Photo courtesy:

The Brazilian president announced in July that he had tested positive for COVID-19. Many say that he did so to publicly extol ‘hydroxychloroquine’, the unproven malaria drug that Bolsonaro had promoting as a treatment for COVID-19 and was taking himself. For months he had flirted with the virus as he flouted social distancing at lively demonstrations and encouraged crowds during outings from the presidential residence, often without a mask.


The Honduras president announced in June that he and his wife had tested positive. Two other people who worked closely with them had also contracted the disease. Hernández said he had started what he called the ‘MAIZ treatment’, an experimental and unproven combination of microdacyn, azithromycin, ivermectin and zinc that his government was promoting as an affordable way of attacking the disease. He was briefly hospitalized and released in July.

Also read: US President Donald Trump, first lady Melania test positive for COVID-19


The Guatemalan president said he tested positive for the virus in September. “My symptoms are very mild. Up to now, I have body aches, it hurt more yesterday than today, like a bad cold,” the president said during a televised address. “I don’t have a fever, I have a bit of a cough,” he had added. He said he’d be working from home and he did so.


Jeanine Anez
Bolivian President Jeanine Anez Photo courtesy:

The virus drove the Bolivian interim president into isolation in July, but she said she was feeling well. She recovered within two weeks and resumed her responsibilities


The newly elected president of the Dominican Republic contracted and recovered from COVID-19 during his campaign. He spent weeks in isolation before the country’s July election.


Iran, the epicentre of the Mideast’s initial coronavirus outbreak, has seen several top officials test positive. Among them are senior Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri and Vice-President Massoumeh Ebtekar. Cabinet members have tested positive too. In February, Iran denied for days that the virus was in the country. After struggling to lock down, Iran has largely reopened its economy even as cases and deaths rise higher.