Extraordinary measures after the new outbreak of coronavirus cases , the government decided in an extraordinary meeting at the Maximos Palace under the Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis.
Among other things, the intensification of the controls and the implementation of the existing measures for the treatment of the coronavirus were discussed.
“The framework is adequate. “There are issues of its implementation,” the Prime Minister stressed at the opening of the meeting and called for “tightening of controls without discounts.” He pointed out two areas that need to be emphasized and concern the protection of workers’ health, especially in tourist areas and the avoidance of scheduling and gatherings, especially indoors. He also stressed the need for greater activation of Municipalities and Regions to implement the measures.
Specifically, the Prime Minister stated at the beginning of the meeting:
“The purpose of the meeting is very specific: to examine the operation and implementation of the relevant provisions and recommendations that have been made regarding the implementation of measures related to Covid. We are, together, all the heads of the audit bodies. I have a picture of the inspections that have been done by the Greek Police and the National Transparency Authority and the Ministry of Commerce, by SYKEAAP (Coordination Center for Market Surveillance and Counter-Trafficking).
I want to be clear: At the moment I consider that the framework we have at our disposal – based on the data we have and based on the recommendations of experts – is a sufficient framework. There is, however, an implementation issue. So, we have to send a clear message: That in order to avoid a possible second wave, what we have set as necessary, minimum conditions to be able to ensure public health, are met.
I emphasize two points: The first has to do with the observance of all rules and hygiene framework by employees, especially in the tourism and catering industry. Mandatory use of a mask and all that is provided by the regulations. And the second, obviously, the avoidance of gatherings and collusion, especially indoors. We have a few such precedents. I think this was also evident from the checks at bars, indoor nightclubs, where we had more people than allowed. There, I see, are the big problems. And we must be strict in our controls. Fines should be imposed and I am not prepared by this policy to make discounts at this time.
Therefore, I want to hear from everyone soon that you are thinking of redeploying your forces in view of the coming days and weeks, fully recognizing that, obviously, it is not your sole object. But it is a central political priority to be sure that we are sending a message to everyone: that controls are being carried out and, where necessary, administrative sanctions and fines set by law and related regulations are being imposed.
This is an issue – and that is why I called the Minister of Interior – which also concerns the Municipalities. Regions and Municipalities cannot be out of this case. It is not just about the central mechanism. Therefore, it is very important that this message is conveyed to both the Regions and the Municipalities. We need them as they have been until today. “Collaborators in this great national effort that we are making”.
At the meeting, the Prime Minister asked the participants to give priority to the controls in the open and closed areas, where there is a large crowd. There will be intensity of controls on KTEL buses as well. The audits will be planned by the coordinating operational body that operates under the supervision of the General Secretariat for Trade and Consumer Protection of the Ministry of Development and Investment, based on the epidemiological data provided daily by the General Secretariat for Civil Protection.
In the joint business center, where all the bodies are represented (ELAS, LS-ELAKT, National Transparency Authority, Decentralized Administration and branches of the General Secretariat of Commerce and Consumer Protection) that participate in the audit process, a representative from each region will be added. large or coastal municipalities of the country, so that there is absolute coordination of controls and better distribution of forces for greater efficiency.