Not clear that lockdown must be extended, Security Council head says
Hubert Bruls, mayor of Nijmegen and chairman of the Security Council, is excited to see whether the Cabinet will extend the current lockdown on Friday. Because it is not clear that the country needs to be completely locked down for another four weeks, he said to the Gelderlander.
"The Outbreak Management Team (OMT) will have to come up with a convincing tale about the effect. That you can really indicate: if we don't continue this lockdown, the hospitals will be completely overloaded within one or two weeks. Because otherwise, I would say: give entrepreneurs, actually everyone in society, more air," Bruls said to the regional broadcaster.
The previous Cabinet decided to put the Netherlands in lockdown on December 18 due to healthcare, Bruls said. "All those measures were taken based on a precautionary principle, not because care was already overrun at the time. As a precaution and to give the booster campaign a chance. It is now well underway. Most people have had their shot or have an appointment," he said.
And three and a half weeks later, the hospitals are not flooded, and ICUs aren't full. If the OMT can't demonstrate that this will happen in the next week or two, there is no obvious reason to extend the lockdown, Bruls said.
The OMT will give the Cabinet new advice on Wednesday. The involved Ministers will discuss it on Thursday. And then, the Security Council, which consists of the mayors that head the 25 security regions in the Netherlands, will discuss the measures with new Public Health Minister Ernst Kuipers on Thursday evening. A press conference is expected on Friday.