Czech government will comply with most opposition comments on the pandemic law

by   CIJ News iDesk III
2021-02-17   10:03

The Czech government is ready to satisfy the opposition in most of its comments on the pandemic law. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (YES) told reporters before leaving for today's V4 summit in Krakow. According to him, there is disagreement on the issue of compensation. According to Babiš, it is not possible for the state to compensate for lost profits due to coronavirus measures, the prime minister pointed out the budgetary implications of such a move.

The cabinet discussed the government's draft pandemic law with the opposition on Tuesday. The regulation is to give the Ministry of Health some powers at the time of the epidemic, for which it is now necessary to declare a state of emergency. Opposition parties demanded that the elements include parliamentary scrutiny, the need for a more detailed justification of the measures and the issue of compensation be added to the regulation.

Babiš said today that the negotiations were constructive. "The comments of the opposition parties were mostly incorporated, we are more or less ready to comply, so that we do not have to constantly deal with the state of emergency. The pandemic law should replace the discussions on the state of emergency," the prime minister said. The parties plan another meeting after the return of the Prime Minister from Krakow today at 19:00.

Disagreements, according to the prime minister, remain on the issue of compensation. "From a budget point of view, we cannot afford to give a blank check to compensate for lost profits," he said. The cabinet will also comment tonight on other opposition proposals that relate generally to measures against covid-19, such as the opening of hairdressing salons and other establishments.

On Friday morning, the government will consider Deputy Prime Minister Karel Havlíček's proposal (YES) to open stores from Monday, February 22. Interior Minister Jan Hamáček (CSSD) said on Tuesday that the cabinet will follow the development of the epidemic and the number of available beds in intensive care units. "There are opinions that freeing up shops, for example, is an absolute madness," Babiš admitted.

According to him, the dismantling would have to be part of a society-wide agreement. In a situation where many people do not comply with the measures, the opening of shops would only be possible if people were prepared to respect the rules. "The debate must take place in the government and with the opposition. Criticizing the measures and at the same time not following them is not the solution," he said.

Source: CTK and Petria-cz