Pedro Sánchez admits that the evolution of the pandemic in Spain “is not good.” It is worrying in some territories and, consequently, it is necessary to stop it, has said in an appearance after the first Council of Ministers after the summer break. The president has announced new measures to promote co-governance with communities at a time when some have complained about the Executive’s inaction. One of them is the Army’s activation for the military to act as trackers to stop the spread of COVID-19. In addition, Sánchez offers to the regional presidents who demand the activation of the state of alarm to limit mobility in their territories. It would be the heads of the regional executives who would hold the sole command.
“With the most absolute respect for a compound, quasi-federal government (…), the government will adopt various measures to reinforce work in the fight against the virus,” said Sánchez, who has announced that 2,000 military personnel will make themselves available to the autonomies to carry out tracking tasks. “Communities that do not have enough trackers can count on the help of the Armed Forces,” he assured.
In addition, it has offered to the communities that demand the activation of the state of alarm – the instrument that allows limiting mobility – in their territories – in part or in all – if the situation makes it necessary and has ensured that the regional presidents will be the that, on this occasion, they hold sole command. The corresponding heads of regional executives, together with the central government, would appear in Congress to render accounts if a temporary extension of the extraordinary measure were necessary.
“If a president considers that he needs this legal instrument in his territory, the Government of Spain opens up to give them this capacity and manifests that the parliamentary group, the parliamentary majority that supports the Government, would also support the proposal of the regional president of the day that thus request it, “he said in his appearance in Moncloa, in which he assured that the state of alarm does not have to mean a confinement like the one that lasted two months from March 14.
At this point, Sánchez stressed during his speech that the autonomous communities have made “an unprecedented effort” and are doing things “well.” “This government wants to strengthen the autonomous state, we were told that we wanted to centralize and remove powers, on the contrary,” the Prime Minister stressed. In this sense, he has repeated at different times in his speech that “we tend to think that the answer to be given in this second phase has to be the same as in the first and it is not.” “The material conditions and the degree of knowledge that we have is much higher,” he pointed out.
The president has also summoned the rest of the political forces to “exile” from the partisan war during the coronavirus pandemic. For this reason, he has ensured that he will hold a new round with the group leaders starting next week. Thus, he has referred to the need to carry out new public accounts to deal with this situation. “We need to promote economic recovery as soon as possible. This requires new budgets and we want to do it with the greatest possible support. The budgets were already useless before the pandemic. Now they are harmful and counterproductive,” he said.
He has also taken the opportunity to call on all parties to reach major agreements, such as the renewal of the Judiciary, which has been in office for two years. PSOE and PP have started negotiations, but a pact has not yet been closed. “We have to reinforce the functioning of the institutions. We need strong, robust institutions,” he said.
Sánchez has also referred to the return to classes scheduled for within a few days. The President of the Government has assured that with the “deployment” of resources in the communities and in the central Government, “we will have safe educational centers.” And he added that they will be “safer than a playground next to our houses.” In this way, he wanted to emphasize that “the return to school is going to take place in optimal conditions.” At this point, he remarked that it is the “communities with progressive governments” that have promoted the hiring of teaching staff to reinforce the return to classes.