By Nelson Belen, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – On Wednesday, October 3rd, doctors for Jair Bolsonaro, confirmed that the controversial right-wing presidential candidate will be sidelined for tonight’s final debate between the candidates due to his injuries sustained from his September 6th stabbing.
“After our clinical evaluation, we advised against participating in discussions or in any activity that might tire him or make him speak for more than ten minutes,” explained surgeon Antonio Luiz Macedo to reporters in front of Bolsonaro’s condominium in Barra da Tijuca.
Macedo, head of the medical team at the Israelita Albert Einstein Hospital in São Paulo that treated Bolsonaro following the attack, added that the candidate is still recovering from two major surgeries — the first occurring right after the attack, and the second, a week later, to correct a severe bowel obstruction.
“Maybe another seven to ten days he will be fully recovered, but today he still gets very tired when he exerts effort,” the surgeon added. “He is not ready to sit around for an hour or two arguing….That may hurt his recovery.”
Bolsonaro had stated that he would like to participate in tonight’s debate, the final one before the October 7th election, but Macedo said that the congressman was compliant with the medical team’s wishes. “He’s extremely obedient, so he will not [participate].”
Bolsonaro was discharged from the hospital last Saturday, September 29th. He promptly returned to Rio de Janeiro to continue his recovery at his home in Barra.
Despite the news that Bolsonaro would miss the final debate, campaign officials revealed that the divisive candidate is considering streaming live on Facebook to talk to voters at the same time of the debate.
Officials emphasized though that Bolsonaro would only be discussing the issues and not commenting on the debate itself.
Since his return home, the 63-year-old has appeared on Facebook Live several times with his son, Flávio Bolsonaro.
This past weekend, hundreds of thousands of women in Brazil took to the streets to demonstrate against Bolsonaro through a social media campaign under the hashtag #EleNao (Not Him).
The former army captain, who is leading in the latest IBOPE opinion poll, has angered many with remarks perceived as misogynistic, racist, and homophobic.
The first round of voting in the Brazilian presidential election will take place on Sunday, October 7th. If no candidate wins more than fifty percent of the vote, there will be a second-round runoff on Sunday, October 28th.