BZ | Nov 24, 2020

Belizean PM John Briceño tests positive for COVID-19

Gavin Riley

Gavin Riley / Our Today

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Prime Minister of Belize John Briceño, during his swearing-in ceremony on Thursday, November 12. (Photo: Facebook @GOBPressOffice)

Newly sworn Prime Minister of Belize, John Briceño, tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on Monday evening (November 23) as the outbreak worsens in the Central American country.

According to a statement from the Government of Belize’s Press Office, Briceño will remain in isolation for the next two weeks while he waits to be re-tested.

The press office did not disclose how PM Briceño possibly contracted the virus, his condition at present, or if anyone else in his immediate administrative bubble is under quarantine.

Prime Minister Briceño, who was sworn in as Belize’s fifth prime minister on November 12, joins his predecessor Dean Barrow becoming the second sitting head of government struck by the infectious disease.

Briceño, leader of the centre-left People’s United Party (PUP) stormed to victory in the 2020 November general elections, ousting the incumbent United Democratic Party (UDP) after 12 years in power. (Photo: Facebook @HonJohnBriceno)

Barrow made headlines on Saturday, November 7, when he was confirmed positive for COVID-19, just days before the CARICOM member country’s 11th general election since independence.

In the meantime, Belize confirmed 67 new cases of the coronavirus, which brings the national caseload to 5,249 as at Monday.

The country has seen 120 deaths since first confirming a case in March, while 2,877 patients have recovered, according to the Belizean Ministry of Health.


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