Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke about the challenges facing Greece and called on the government to tackle the corona pandemic.
The Prime Minister, speaking on SKAI’s Synthesis show and journalist Pavlos Tsimas, analyzed the government’s strategy before the arrival of the corona, while he clarified that in case there is a second wave in the fall , Greece will be even more ready to deal with it. , as he and the government do not invest in luck.
It was obvious that we had to do a lockdown quickly
“It was absolutely clear to me that this virus would reach our country and show the same rapid transmission characteristics that it showed everywhere in the world, I had no reason to believe that it would behave differently in Greece. In addition, we had to deal with the peculiarity that we had a relatively limited number of beds in Intensive Care, a legacy not only of the previous government – I would say – but of the crisis as a whole. And an elderly population. Therefore, the decision was whether to do the lockdown sooner or later. It was obvious that we had to do it quickly, it was completely obvious to me, because it would be the lockdown, as was finally the case in all countries, “said the Prime Minister.
He added: “I believe that the countries that acted quickly and effectively, and in the end had few cases, will be countries that recover faster than the others.”
On the challenges of governance, dealing with crises and breaking down stereotypes for Greeks
Regarding the challenges that he was called upon to face only during the first year of his rule, Mr. Mitsotakis stated that “I certainly did not imagine that in the first year of my government I would have to manage so many crises. But going back to 2021, in this emblematic year, perhaps this legacy will lead us to revisit both our history and our future through a different perspective. . ”
“It was a big test for all of us, not just the government, which had to make very difficult decisions in a short time. But these decisions, Mr. Tsima, had to be communicated. I spoke from the outset about the democracy of persuasion. Obviously we took measures, but these measures were not repressive. The fines that were imposed for violating the lockdown were very low in relation to the absolute compliance of a society, which with its will and consciously subjugated the “misunderstood individual egoism” of the Greeks to the collective good. And that was a very big conquest for the country, a very big dowry for the next day. Many stereotypes about this crisis have been refuted, “he added.
We are not investing in luck, we will be ready in case of a second wave
“It simply came to our notice then. And I would certainly not leave the country unprepared in any way for the very serious possibility, the high probability, of the coronation returning in some way in the fall or winter. However, we will be more prepared “, Mr. Mitsotakis also said and justified his position:” Why am I saying this? First, tens of billions of euros have been invested, dollars and the most brilliant minds are working to find drugs and vaccines. We do not know when they will be available, but there is an unprecedented mobilization of the scientific community.
And I want to emphasize here – and I think it matters – that we have extremely distinguished Greeks and Greek-Americans in the field of biotechnology in America, in very important companies. I have communicated with almost everyone. It is a great privilege for the country that we have access to this information and we may need to have access to medicines or vaccines tomorrow.
Second , society is more prepared. Social distances, protection measures, have become our second habit. We don’t all have to wear masks, but I’ve seen many studies that if we wear enough masks this can prevent, for example, the spread of the virus in public transport. So, we are all more suspicious, we have changed our attitudes.
Third , our health systems are more prepared. In October we will have many more intensive beds than we had in March.
And fourth , we will be smarter in testing and tracking . What does this mean; That we hope that even if the virus strikes, we will not need to take horizontal measures. We will be able to close a school – the unborn if it goes to a school – a building block, even a city, but not necessarily horizontal measures. We will be able to be smarter in the measures we take. ”
Confidence in the relationship with the citizens was built
Regarding the experts and the role they played in dealing with the pandemic, Mr. Mitsotakis said: “We did what the experts told us. And not only that. We took the experts forward. Mr. Tsiodras made the daily update. This is not the rule. In many other countries, politicians, presidents, and prime ministers themselves have made daily updates. I did a lot of sermons, but I didn’t talk every day. I didn’t explain what was happening every day. I did not enter the fields of others. These are the fields of experts and scientists. And I was very pleased to find that after ten years of populism, where you know how much the experts, the technocrats, the connoisseurs of their subject were insulted, that Greek society again trusted those who know, who have studied a lot, who have academic parchments that speak with a mixture, and I really want to credit that to Mr. Tsiodras, who speaks with a mixture of absolute technocratic adequacy and emotional empathy. It hurts what he does, he is a real doctor, he cares about each case individually and he gave us the opportunity in this way to convince the citizens that what we are doing has the stamp of science “.
” I believe very much in the concept of trust. All countries that have strong institutions, not only formal but also informal, rely on the concept of trust. And strong institutions are linked to prosperity. So, this trust in the state, in our fellow citizen, that we will all do the right thing and there will be no one who will take care to deceive the state and be rewarded for their behavior, all this is very, very important, they came to us. from the crisis. Let’s keep them, let’s keep the good side. There is the downside: Human losses – every loss is a drama in itself – the deep economic crisis. These are the difficult ones, we know them, but let’s take a look at the positives. And I think that for social scientists it will be a very interesting model what happened in Greece, “said the Prime Minister.
And he referred to the first steps taken by his government: “When we made the difficult decision to cancel the carnival in Patras, knowing that Patras is close to Italy and seeing what is happening in Italy, we have not yet had cases in Greece. And many rushed to tell us “hurry up, what are you doing? Patras will be financially ruined “. But he doesn’t want much. 2-3 big events of mass gathering and your virus escaped. This was done in Italy, by 2-3 football matches, by a ski resort in Austria. And then countries were found that could no longer. Italy, when it discovered the magnitude of the problem, was too late to do anything. ”
The changes brought about by the pandemic at work
As for the changes caused by the pandemic in the workplace, Mr. Mitsotakis said: “If this crisis has proved that one can work from anywhere, why not work from a very nice place? Especially when he is safe. This is very important. We see people who want to return to Greece. Perhaps the best advertisement to reverse the brain drain was what happened to the corona. Because he faced the pathogenesis that led so many young people to leave: mistrust, lack of meritocracy, the image that we are often a messy state. All that has changed and the added value of this experience is enormous and we need to preserve it as the apple of our eye for the next day. ”
And the Prime Minister concluded by talking about the forthcoming changes: “Evolution goes through adaptability. Adaptability to nature itself is the way we move forward and change. And societies that show adaptability are the ones that will eventually be able to move forward and integrate the changes they need to make. Of course we need to change. And we are already changing. And these changes, many of which are changes for the better, are a great achievement for the country. ”
Source – iefimerida.gr