Matovic “Disappointed” by President Caputova, Her Call Was “Inappropriate”

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Prime Minister Igor Matovic at a press conference at a testing site on Saturday. (Photo by TASR)

Bratislava, October 31 (TASR) – Prime Minister Igor Matovic (OLaNO), speaking at a press conference concerning the countrywide testing for coronavirus in Slovakia on Saturday, said that he was disappointed by President Zuzana Caputova’s call for the Government on Friday to reconsider the operation.

At the same time he described as “inappropriate” her appeal to lift a ban on free movement for those who don’t get tested.

“I had expected that she, as the supreme commander of the Armed Forces, would help the soldiers to carry out this project, but, sadly, the opposite was true. I didn’t feel any particular need to communicate with Mrs. President; my response to her call made yesterday is the success that we’re experiencing together today,” said Matovic.

The prime minister conceded that there might not be another round of testing in some regions next weekend. “We’ll need to look at the results. It might happen that some districts will see such a low positivity rate that, theoretically, repeated testing wouldn’t make much sense. Nevertheless, as the things stand now, we should expect a second round everywhere, while a few districts with extremely good figures could be dropped,” he said.

Matovic claimed that the bill for the two weekends of testing the entire population could be equal to a single day of a hard lockdown.

Caputova after meeting Chief of the General Staff Daniel Zmeko and commander of the testing operation Ivan Pacho on Friday said that only around 60 percent of testing sites seemed to have enough medical personnel for the project. She then issued a call on Matovic to ensure that the mass testing is carried out only where everything has been organised properly. At the same time she urged the Government to make participation in the testing genuinely voluntary by reviewing the ban on free movement for those who aren’t tested.

Defence Minister Jaroslav Nad (OLaNO) on Saturday said that more than 98 percent of the testing sites were opened by 10 a.m. The national testing was launched at 7 a.m.