Indigenous Village Chief in Rio de Janeiro State Dies of Covid-19

Domingos Venite, 68, was the leader of the largest indigenous tribe in the state

Chief Domingos Venite, 68, leader of the Sapukai Guarani tribe, in Angra dos Reis, on the coast of Rio de Janeiro state, died in the early hours of Tuesday (21). The chief, infected with the novel coronavirus, had been admitted to the Covid-19 Treatment Reference Center (Santa Casa) since June 23. Domingos was the leader of the largest indigenous tribe in the state of Rio.

The City of Angra dos Reis decreed an official three-day mourning for the chief's death. The municipal government informed that the indigenous "received all the necessary care."

Cacique Domingos Venite Foto: Reprodução/ TV Rio Sul

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the village had been isolated since the beginning of the pandemic. According to the city, there are 340 indigenous people from the Guarani tribe in the Sapukai Village. The tribe had 85 cases of coronavirus, 84 of which were recovered. There are currently 15 suspected cases.

Ecologist Sérgio Ricardo Verde Potiguara, a member of the State Council for Indigenous Rights (CEDIND-RJ), lamented the chief's death. According to him, the state of Rio has eight villages in three municipalities (Maricá, Angra, and Paraty). 2010 IBGE census pointed out that there are 15,865 indigenous people in the state.

The State Department of Health reports that since the beginning of the pandemic, 147 cases of Covid-19 have been reported in Indians living in the state of Rio de Janeiro, 88 in Angra dos Reis and 59 in Paraty. One death was recorded in Angra dos Reis.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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