Bratislava, October 15 (TASR) – A total of 1,929 new positive tests for SARS-CoV-2 were reported in Slovakia on Wednesday, Prime Minister Igor Matovic (OLaNO) wrote on Facebook on Thursday before the health authorities released the official figures for the previous day.
Matovic described this as a “dramatic increase of 63 percent when compared to last week” and the “most difficult time experienced by Slovakia since World War II”. He called on the public to unite behind infectious disease specialists.
“Let’s protect the health and lives of the most vulnerable together,” appealed Matovic.
Initially without naming anyone, he lambasted a “know-it-all” in reference to Economy Minister Richard Sulik (Freedom and Solidarity/SaS) for his “delirious” talk and “terrible conspiracy gaffe” when he allegedly said that the “virus has weakened, we have a minimal number of patients in hospital, there are few deaths and we’re making a big mistake by listening to epidemiologists”.
The prime minister further expressed his concerns about the “devastating effects of the rubbish spread by SaS regarding people’s willingness to unite against our real enemy”.
“I’m afraid that the anti-face-maskers of conviction from [far-right Marian] Kotleba’s flock will now be joined by many people who’ve been deceived by Sulik’s gaffe, and the measures adopted as of today will eventually be of no avail. Amid panic, we’ll have to close absolutely everything in a few weeks, with the whole of Slovakia then having to suffer for months instead of dealing with restrictions lasting a few weeks,” wrote Matovic.
Sulik, who is the SaS party leader and first deputy prime minister, walked out of a session of the Central Crisis Management Team on Sunday, stating that no hard data were presented to justify the closure of restaurants, gyms and other facilities across the country. Later on he proposed that in order to mitigate the economic impacts such facilities should be closed only in areas badly affected by coronavirus. Matovic flatly rejected this idea, however.