Jorge Silva, deputy minister for consumer protection, backed out, saying his testimony was misrepresented after he announced that people without vaccination cards were found for criminal health attacks. Additionally, he said the above offenses did not involve unvaccinated individuals. Meanwhile, Health Minister Jeyson Auza said infections in the country have increased by 13 percent.
At a press conference, Silva said: “I’m sorry it’s distorted. At no point did we say that those who don’t get vaccinated will go to jail.”
On Sunday, after participating in a program on the state broadcaster, on the question of the sanctions against those who do not receive vaccinations and who pose a threat to the population, Silva referred to Article 256 of the Criminal Code, which deals with crimes against public health .
This point of the penal norm states that a person can enter from one to 10 years in prison if “they spread serious or contagious diseases or cause epidemics”.
“If a person is found in a place without a Covid vaccination card or without their PCR test, they will be subjected to a Covid test, which is carried out by the headquarters. If it’s negative, the police will remove it, ”he said.
In the meantime, if it tests positive, it will be “prosecuted for the crime of attacking public health and imprisonment for up to 10 years,” said Silva.
However, yesterday he said he did not say literally that failure to use the anticovid vaccine would mean 10 years in prison.
Yesterday, Silva changed his mind, stating that Supreme Decree 4640, promulgated last Thursday, respects the voluntary nature of the use of existing anticovid doses in the country. However, he said those who have not been vaccinated will be required to provide a PCR test for emergency and control measures.
“For reasons of health protection of the population, it is stipulated that the vaccination card or the PCR test (…) cannot enter certain places to enter certain facilities,” said the authority.
In this context, he stated that “the inspection, control and monitoring of the activities of public and private institutions, which are subject to state authorization, must be applied by the municipalities and governors in their area of responsibility in order to ensure the health of Bolivians.”
While the sanctions for non-compliance or failure to perform the appropriate card or PCR test are being discussed, Minister Auza reported that positive cases of coronavirus have increased by 13 percent.
“We registered 12,744 cases for this epidemiological week, an increase of 13% compared to the previous week. Six departments saw an increase in cases and three a decrease. This fourth wave is characterized by a drastic decrease in the death rate, as we have a drastic decrease of less than 1% from the 6.2% of the first wave, 0.9% to be precise, ”he stated.
He explained that of the 12,744 nationwide cases, 7,698 belong to Santa Cruz, meaning 60.4% of infections are concentrated in that department. This fact is alarming and urged his authorities to take measures to contain the advance of Covid-19.
Opposition legislators criticize ambiguity
The opposition assembly MPs described the government’s stance on the announcement of sanctions as not very serious, as vaccinations were found to be “voluntary”.
We Believe Senator Centa Rek regretted the threats made by Vice Minister Jorge Silva based on Supreme Decree 4640 requiring the presentation of a vaccination card against Covid-19, and indicated that she was following the negligent and improvised policy of fighting against the pandemic by the MAS government.
“We ask ourselves from the opposition: How is it possible that a new decree obliges something that a law does not? Article 15 of the Emergency Health Act states that vaccination is voluntary, but the decree requires the opposite; that is, we are once again facing a mess and abuse against citizens that has been created by the MAS, ”he asked.
Civic Community MP (CC) Alejandro Reyes pointed out that this is one of the many contradictions the government is dealing with.
“He says he will sanction those who don’t get vaccinated, but in his ranks they have people who haven’t been vaccinated, like the Vice President himself. They talk about year-end parties when they promote marches,” he said, pointing out point out that this is not provided for in the standard.
The punishment will not carry out any activities
Deputy Minister for Consumer Protection Jorge Silva said there was no talk of jail time for citizens who fail to get vaccinated or fail to show PCR tests, pointing out that the biggest sanction “will be” those who don’t be able”. attend the event they attended. “.
“The national vaccine plan has three principles, universality (which applies to everyone), the principle of gratuity and the principle of voluntariness, so there can be no penal sanctions,” he said.
The biggest penalty for the person who attends an event and does not meet the requirements is for not being able to attend.