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We Are in an ‘Extreme Social Emergency’

The monthly debate on Covid-19, began with Socialist Deputy (PS), Paulo Cafôfo, questioning the President, Miguel Albuquerque, on whether the Regional Government (RG) “knows how to deal” with the pandemic.

The socialist deputy listed several items including the poverty risk index and unemployment.  He went on to say that the the Region is in an extreme state of social emergency, the island’s business fabric is devastated, and the economy is without immunity.

Replying to this, Miguel Albuquerque confirmed that the RG has never denied the ‘devastating impact of the crisis.’ However, he did point out that the RG has supported supported health, local businesses, social, cultural and sports activities.  He went on to say: “I never said that the economy is working well. What I said was that, unlike the mainland and other European countries, we are not in total confinement, and I am convinced that this has been a wise decision.”

Paulo Cafôfo reformulated the issue, accusing the President of trying to disguise the problem. For him the best measure was to implement the simplified lay-off, as used on the mainland.  Retorting sharply, Miguel Albuquerque confronted Paulo Cafôfo stating: “Your beloved Government of the Republic does not pay for the lay-off! And a regional credit line of over 100 million euros had been created.”

Samantha Gannon

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