Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has launched an attack on coronavirus vaccines, even suggesting that the one developed by Pfizer-BioNTech could turn people into crocodiles or bearded ladies.
The far-right leader has been sceptical of the coronavirus since it first emerged late last year, branding it "a little flu." This week he insisted he would not be vaccinated, even while launching the country's mass innoculation program.
"In the Pfizer contract it's very clear: 'we're not responsible for any side effects.' If you turn into a crocodile, it's your problem," Bolsonaro said on Thursday.
That vaccine has been undergoing tests in Brazil for weeks and is already being used in the United States and Britain.
"If you become superhuman, if a woman starts to grow a beard or if a man starts to speak with an effeminate voice, they will not have anything to do with it," he said, referring to the drug manufacturers.
When launching the immunization campaign on Wednesday, Bolsonaro also said it would be free but not compulsory.
And he said he doesn't need the shots.
"Some people say I'm giving a bad example. But to the imbeciles, to the idiots that say this, I tell them I've already caught the virus, I have the antibodies, so why get vaccinated?"
There have been a small number of cases of apparent reinfection although there is no certainty over whether a person can be reinfected or how long immunity lasts.
Bolsonaro caught the virus in July but recovered within three weeks.