Brazil: Comptroller Investigation Concludes Bolsonaro’s Vaccination Record Is False


An investigation by the Office of the Comptroller General (CGU) has concluded that the record of former president Jair Bolsonaro’s COVID-19 vaccination, as indicated on his vaccination card, is false. The investigation was initiated in response to a request made under the Access to Information Law (LAI) at the end of 2022.

According to current data from the Ministry of Health, Bolsonaro’s vaccination record shows that he received the vaccine on July 19, 2021, at the Parque Peruche Basic Health Unit (UBS) in the north of São Paulo. However, the CGU found discrepancies in this information. Bolsonaro was not in São Paulo on the date specified, and the vaccination batch listed in the Ministry of Health’s system was not available at the UBS on that date.

Records from the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) indicate that the former president flew from São Paulo to Brasília the day before the alleged vaccination and did not take another flight until at least July 22, 2021. Additionally, statements from UBS employees taken by auditors, including the nurse named on the vaccination card, refute the claim. The nurse not only denied administering the vaccine but also provided documents proving that she was not employed at the UBS on the date of the alleged vaccination. The CGU auditors further verified the UBS’s physical records, which did not show Bolsonaro’s presence on July 19, 2021.

State Fraud

The CGU concluded that the fraudulent entry occurred within the state system. Investigations revealed that all UBS employees shared the same login and password for the VaciVida system, maintained by the São Paulo State Health Department. As no specific individual responsible for the fraud could be identified, the CGU recommended closing the case but will forward the investigation results to the authorities of the state and municipality of São Paulo for further action.

The Comptroller’s Office stated that it conducted a thorough review at the Ministry of Health and verified the security of the system managed by the agency for receiving information from states and municipalities. They affirmed that it was impossible for the data to have been entered at the federal level. Furthermore, the auditors did not uncover any suspicions of data alteration by federal public servants.

Previous Records

This is not the first time Bolsonaro’s COVID-19 vaccination records have been called into question. Two other registrations, allegedly in Duque de Caxias, Rio de Janeiro, were made by municipal agents and canceled before the CGU’s investigation. Suspicions of a vaccination card fraud scheme involving a municipal secretary led to the Federal Police’s Operation Venire, resulting in the arrest of Lieutenant Colonel Mauro Cid, a former aide to the former president, in May of last year.

During Mauro Cid’s arrest, Bolsonaro’s defense stated there was insufficient evidence of the former president’s direct involvement in the case. In a statement to the Federal Police in May last year, Bolsonaro said he was at the disposal of the justice system and denied instructing subordinates to alter his vaccination records.

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