Babiš: Opponents of the state of emergency will be responsible for the deaths of the people


Prague – According to Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (YES), those who do not vote for the extension of the state of emergency in the Chamber of Deputies on Thursday will be responsible for the deaths of their fellow citizens. Babiš told reporters today during a visit to Serbia. In this context, he criticized the fact that the opposition to the negotiations on the extension of the state of emergency brings budgetary issues. The Cabinet is asking the Chamber of Deputies to allow the state of emergency to continue after February 14, it does not yet have support.

“If someone does not approve the state of emergency tomorrow (Thursday), they will be directly responsible for the deaths of our fellow citizens. Directly responsible. If mortality increases in our country, then let the opposition take it on a T-shirt,” Babiš said. According to him, the state of emergency has nothing to do with the budget. “If we are to fight the covid, then we must take some measures. If anyone wants to recall the army (from hospitals) and the collapse of our healthcare system, please let them take it on a T-shirt,” he added.

The prime minister said the cabinet needed a state of emergency and related tools to manage the epidemic. “Tomorrow (Thursday) the government was supposed to be about the budget, we will postpone it until Monday, tomorrow morning we have to agree on how we will proceed,” Babiš said. Support for the extension of the state of emergency was previously ruled out by the Communists and the SPD, today also by the coalition of the ODS, the People’s Party and TOP 09.

The cabinet does not want a state of emergency for itself, but in order to be able to protect people, take measures and deploy soldiers to help hospitals, Babiš said. “Opposition parties are confusing the state of the epidemic and in hospitals with budgetary demands. We cannot link emergency measures to any budgetary implications,” he said.

When the opposition negotiates with the government, according to the prime minister, it is only about publicity. After Sunday’s meeting with the chairmen of the Pirates and Mayors and the Independents, he handed over the party’s proposals to the ministers. “Even though we did some things, the Pirates also refused. It’s always about visibility, the press release after the meeting. That’s all the opposition is watching,” he said.

Babiš: The ministers are preparing for a situation where the state of emergency will end

Babiš ordered the ministers to resolve the situation that would have occurred if the Chamber of Deputies had not allowed the government to extend the state of emergency. He told reporters today before leaving to visit Serbia that he hopes the opposition parties will forget about politics and think about health care. Without an emergency, it will not be possible to address the situation in hospitals overcrowded with patients with covid-19, he warned.

Last week, the cabinet lost support to the KSČM in prolonging the state of emergency, and has not yet found agreement with the opposition. Meetings with Pirates and STAN and probably also a coalition of ODS, TOP 09 and People’s Party should continue today. “There is no result, we acted into the night. The demands of the opposition are of an economic nature and would have far-reaching consequences for the budget,” Babiš said at Tuesday’s meeting. He criticized the fact that the parties are proposing measures with budgetary implications and then do not want to support it.

According to Babiš, the situation in the Czech Republic is not good. “We have overcrowded hospitals and without a state of emergency it will be a big problem,” he said. He therefore instructed the Minister of Health Jan Blatný (for YES), the Minister of the Interior Jan Hamáček (ČSSD) and other members of the cabinet to resolve the situation in the event that the state of emergency ends on 14 February. But the prime minister hopes that the opposition will forget “politics and elections” and support the government’s request. He considers repeated debates about the state of emergency to be politicized.

According to Babiš, Blatný should focus on finally passing a law that will give his ministry the power to decide on the necessary measures without a state of emergency. The Cabinet approved the draft for this purpose last May, but the House did not discuss it. In October, Babiš stated that there are a number of templates in the Chamber of Deputies and that the priority is a tax package, nursing allowance or budget.

According to Babiš, legislators from the Ministries of Health, the Interior and the Government Office are analyzing the legality of the procedure whereby the Cabinet would declare a new one soon after the end of the state of emergency. Hamáček said on Tuesday that it could mean circumventing the Constitution of the Czech Republic. “The question is whether it could act as the last emergency brake,” he said, not completely ruling out the possibility. The government approved the request for a further extension of the state of emergency until March 16 on Monday.

The Coalition Together will not support the extension of the state of emergency

The Coalition Together has definitely decided not to support the government’s request to extend the state of emergency, the cabinet will appear before the deputies on Thursday. TOP 09 chairwoman Markéta Adamová Pekarová, accompanied by ODS leaders Petr Fiala and People’s Party Marian Jurečka, told reporters this morning that the governing parties had not even met the basic demand of the coalition. ODS, KDU-ČSL and TOP 09 mind that the government is not negotiating enough with them to resolve the pandemic. The three-party coalition also criticized the ANO movement for not supporting the discussion of the draft electoral law in the Chamber of Deputies, as well as Prime Minister Andrej Babiš for leaving for Serbia at the time he was due to negotiate.

Pirates and the STAN movement will comment on the request at a press conference on Thursday morning. However, the chairman of the Pirates, Ivan Bartoš, reminded on Twitter today that the government has already rejected the government’s proposal to extend the state of emergency four times. “We will not accede to it this time either. Our main goal is that the state of emergency will no longer be needed at all, but will be replaced as soon as possible by a pandemic law that does not unnecessarily restrict people’s rights and freedoms,” he said. He added that they had submitted five proposals to the Prime Minister on how to improve the situation. “It seems that the government has decided to ignore them. But to clarify: they did not discuss the extension of the state of emergency at all. We refuse to trade,” he said.

The government has requested an extension of the state of emergency for another 30 days, ie until 16 March. Otherwise, the state of emergency will end on Sunday, February 14. The ANO and CSSD minority government does not yet have sufficient support for its sixth request. She did not find support at Tuesday’s meeting with the opposition, further negotiations were expected today. Today, Deputy Prime Minister Jan Hamáček (CSSD) called on the opposition and government partners to negotiate.

“We have supported the government many times (and I will do it again when it comes up with something sensible). But the public must also know that the government refuses to negotiate with us except everything: to simply support a state of emergency,” ODS chairman commented on social media .

According to Pekarová, no specific proposals or efforts for a solution were heard from the Prime Minister. “We are shocked by the way the government approaches such a serious situation, how it does not care about human lives and the solution to the epidemic,” she said. According to her, if the government cared about it, it would have been trying to negotiate emergency support for a long time. She criticized the YES movement’s refusal to table the points requested by the Together coalition at a House meeting. According to Pekarová, in such a situation the coalition cannot support the extension of the state of emergency. She called the decision final. Representatives of the Babiš coalition also repeatedly criticized him for flying to Serbia in this situation today.

In the past, the Communists helped the government extend the state of emergency, but now they refuse. The government has not yet received support from the coalition of Pirates and STAN. Hamáček on Tuesday did not rule out that the government could, in the extreme case, declare a state of emergency anew, even though, according to lawyers, this may be unconstitutional. The chairman of the ODS did not want to comment on such an opportunity. “Let’s not anticipate what the government will come up with,” Fialal said when asked. According to him, the government should finally start negotiations on adjusting the state of crisis, so that the state of emergency does not have to be prolonged.

Hamáček said today that if the government does not receive support, it will try to announce the measure in accordance with the Public Health Protection Act. But then he will probably face lawsuits.


Source: České noviny – hlavní události by www.ceskenoviny.cz.

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