Opposition Welcomes Easing of Restrictions But Considers It Insufficient

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Source: Pixabay
Source: Pixabay

Social Democrat MP Arsen Bauk said that criteria for the introduction of epidemiological restrictions were not clear but that it was good that cafes would be allowed to sell coffee to go, noting ironically and in an allusion to Zagreb University Rector Damir Boras, “If one has to buy coffee in a bakery, it is logical for the rector to get vaccinated in a dental clinic.”

SDP MP: What is permissible for Jupiter may not be permissible for a bull

“It is not clear why betting shops and casinos are being opened while other catering establishments are not, but I guess the government thought that those who want to gamble can also gamble with their health,” said Bauk.

We think that the government lacks sufficient plans as to how to mitigate the financial consequences of the crisis and we once again call on it to impose a moratorium on debt enforcement, the SDP MP said.

He criticised a gathering held on Wednesday outside the Zagreb Cathedral, where more than 25 people, including the head of Zagreb’s hospital for infectious diseases, Alemka Markotić, attended a religious event.

“Despite restrictions on gatherings, the leading people of the national coronavirus crisis management team actively participate in such events. That message confuses citizens because ‘what is permissible for Jupiter may not be permissible for a bull’ and I’m not sure citizens would like to feel like bulls,” he said.

Bauk went on to say that the relaxation of restrictions is not “a reward for citizens” as stated by the prime minister but that rather the situation now is slightly better so one can afford to ease restrictions.

“It is not acceptable that when the situation is good, the government claims all the credit and when it is bad, then irresponsible citizens, who are called bioterrorists, are to blame,” said Bauk.

MP Bartulica: Explanation about rector’s vaccination tragicomic

Stephen Bartulica of the Homeland Movement wondered why bar and restaurant owners had not been allowed to sell coffee to go sooner but were being allowed to do so now, after public pressure had become too great.

“We did not see clear indicators that lockdown yields results, as evidenced by the situation in many countries. This now is more like an improvisation, as if the government did not have a solution but was just copying what other countries are doing,” he said.

“If mass vaccination is the solution, one should say that the government has failed because it put too much trust in the European clan. We are witnessing delays, we can read about queues outside the Russian Embassy and about other countries already ordering the Russian vaccine. The question is what the Croatian government will do. There are too many ad hoc solutions and too much improvisation,” said Bartulica.

Commenting on Zagreb University Rector Damir Boras skipping the line to get vaccinated against COVID-19, Bartulica said the explanation of the case was tragicomic.

“Someone should answer for what happened at the KBC Zagreb hospital, it is no wonder that cynicism is currently very much widespread in Croatia,” said Bartulica.

He, too, resented what he described as the prime minister’s condescending style of communication.

Bridge MP Božo Petrov welcomed the relaxation of epidemiological restrictions but noted that it was too little and not fair as shopping malls were full of people while cafes and restaurants were being allowed to sell coffee to go, which accounts for 5% of their revenue.

“It is legitimate to ask the prime minister who has pressured him into allowing betting shops and casinos to open but not bars and restaurants,” said Petrov.

He, too, noted that people in charge of introducing restrictions were themselves not complying with them while calling on others to be responsible.

As for Boras, Petrov said that people who should serve as an example to others were unfortunately no examples.

He underlined that at-risk groups should be the first to get vaccinated.

MP Vilim Matula of the Green-Left Bloc supported the relaxation of restrictions but noted that it had been forced considering that previous restrictions were unfair and illogical.

“This was to be expected but I cannot understand why outdoor fairs are not allowed,” he said.

He added that caution was necessary so that a possible third wave of the epidemic could be as mild as possible, noting that fully opening bars and restaurants was not realistic.

“It is much more realistic to expect help for them so that they can hold on for a month, a month and a half, when they will be able to open terraces,” he said.

Marin Lerotić of the Istrian Democratic Party (IDS) welcomed the relaxation of restrictions, calling for a regional approach, and Marijana Puljak of Centre said reasonable measures had finally been introduced.

We ask the national coronavirus crisis management team to treat all citizens equally because we could see several hundred people at MP Miroslav Tuđman’s funeral despite the fact that the number of participants in such events is limited to 25, and we could also see masses at which epidemiological measures are violated yet no one has responded to that, said Puljak.


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