Government considers decreeing public calamity situation after end of state of emergency

The Government is considering decreeing the situation of public calamity due to the covid-19 pandemic as of May 3, when the current period of state of emergency in Portugal ends.

This information about the period following the foreseeable end of the state of emergency was transmitted to the Lusa agency by a source from the executive, after the online newspaper Observador advanced with this news.

“These scenarios are still being studied and there are no decisions made. Until the Council of Ministers next Thursday we will consider several hypotheses. But the public calamity situation is one of them, ”said the same government source.

According to the Civil Protection Bases Law, the Council of Ministers resolution that decrees the situation of calamity can establish “limits or conditions to the movement or permanence of people, other living beings or vehicles”, as well as “sanitary and safety”.

The Prime Minister announced today that the Government will enact a ban on travel between municipalities on the long weekend of May 1st to 3rd, as it was in force during the Easter period.

Immediately, however, the question arose about the Government’s powers to impose these limitations on May 3, already after the state of emergency ended at 24:00 the previous day.

“Regardless of the state of emergency, there are a number of other legal instruments, whether public health legislation or the Civil Protection Bases Law, which allows for the containment of rules, restrictions on circulation or conditioning in the operation of certain establishments ”, Argued António Costa.

In other words, according to the Prime Minister, regardless of what the President of the Republic decides on a possible extension of the state of emergency from May 2, “it is certain and safe that, even if the state of emergency ends, the country will not will return to normality ”.

“Restrictions will continue to be in force with the legal authorization that is necessary for this purpose. For May 3, there are legal measures that allow to apply these rules to restrict circulation ”, he warned.

Both the Prime Minister and the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, said they expected the current period of state of emergency, the third decreed in this context of the 19-covid pandemic, to be the last.

From Diário Notícias

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