The retired athlete had thrown a big birthday in Jamaica, where he lives, which was attended by local and international guests.
The fastest man alive, Usain Bolt, has tested positive for the coronavirus in Jamaica, where he lives, after he celebrated his 34th birthday with a host of friends on August 21. The world-record holder athlete in 100m and 200m and an eight-time Olympic gold medalist had posted a video on social media before his results came back positive.
He had taken the test on August 22, a day after his birthday, and intended to quarantine. He urged others around him to isolate as well. "I did a test on Saturday because I have work," Bolt said, according to CNN. "I'm trying to be responsible so I'm going to stay in and stay in for my friends. Also, I'm having no symptoms. I'm going to quarantine myself and wait to see what the protocol is ... until then ... I'm quarantined by myself and just taking it easy. Be safe out there," he said.
Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness had urged the citizens to be careful and to continue taking precautions. He reminded people of the importance of wearing masks in public, avoiding gatherings of more than 20 people, and maintaining social distance. However, Bolt's birthday bash, which was attended by notable soccer players Manchester City's Raheem Sterling and Bayer Leverkusen's Leon Bailey, did not follow those precautions. Bailey's manager and adopted father, said, "How could Leon not attend and support his friend?"
Videos posted on August 21 on social media had shown that the former sprinter was mingling with guests, without a mask. "It is now public knowledge that Mr. Bolt has been tested positive," Dr. Christopher Tufton, the Jamaican Minister of Health and Wellness, said in a virtual press conference on August 24. "He has been formally notified -- I'm told -- by the authorities and in keeping with standard protocols once there is a positive case, irrespective of the individual, it triggers an approach to questioning, interrogation if you will, which would then follow through with contact tracing," he added.
"The authorities have advised that our surge in cases can be clearly linked to a number of activities -- church conventions, funerals, parties and gatherings above the 20 rule," said Holness during the virtual conference. "There are a number of pictures and videos that have been circulating of parties with no mask wearing, no social distancing etc. There are also reports of an activity relating to Usain Bolt," he added. "The police are investigating in all aspects of the matter, so no one is going to be treated with any exemption or given any special treatment. All Jamaicans have a duty and of course those who have the public air and have influence in public spheres they have an even greater duty," he added.
"Best birthday ever," Bolt, who retired from athletics in 2017, posted on Instagram, according to NBC News. He had also shared a photo of himself holding his daughter, Olympia, who is less than six months old.
While some fans wished the athlete a speedy recovery, others accused him of being careless.