Covas was diagnosed with cancer in 2019. It was first discovered in his digestive system and later spread to his bones. He was hospitalized on May 2 at Sao Paulo’s Hospital Sirio-Libanes, where his condition worsened.
Covas was elected vice mayor in 2016 and became Sao Paulo’s youngest mayor in 2018, after Joao Doria left city hall to run for state governor. Covas was re-elected in 2020 with almost 60% of the vote.
With Covas’ death, Vice Mayor Ricardo Nunes will become mayor of Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest city.
Covas was divorced and had one son, 15-year-old Tomas.