Prime Minister Ersin Tatar has said that the government has a fund of 30 million TL to manage the outbreak of Covid-19 and that more money will be found. He noted, however, that this would not be easy.
Speaking yesterday at a plenary session of the TRNC Assembly during which the coronavirus pandemic was discussed, Tatar said that all necessary measures against the disease had been taken with courage and at the right time and remain in good order.
He that the TRNC, which had protected both its own people and foreigners, must take the place it deserves in the world now.
Tatar also said that 6,700 tests for the coronavirus had been performed so far, 19 patients are still being treated, 1,500 Turkish Cypriots had been repatriated to North Cyprus and 400 people are still in quarantine. He said that they have around 5,000 test kits and that the more tests they do, the clearer the situation will be.
Also addressing the assembly, Foreign Minister Kudret Ozersay said there would be specific criteria for opening up the sectors of the economy that are now closed due to the coronavirus and that a “new way of life” in those sectors would be determined. Responding to those who criticised the government for mismanagement of the crisis, Ozersay said those who want to see how a crisis is managed should look at the United Kingdom. “The situation in Spain and Italy is well known”, he added.
Turkish Republican Party (CTP) opposition leader Tufan Erhurman also criticised the government for failing to make the necessary preparations for the sectors of the economy that are closed due to coronavirus and has offered to help.
He said that if the government does not want help, it must make these preparations on its own and called on it to realise the seriousness of the situation. Also noting that the government will provide 1,500 TL in aid for each employee to employers who promise not to lay off their workers, Erhurman said the 1,500 TL per month is an amount that is not enough for the minimum cost of food and other basic necessities.
Noting the financial difficulties they will face, Erhurman said that the time will come when the closed sectors of the economy will be re-opened and a crisis management centre will be set up to manage the economy.