‘Not a race’: Francophone politicians oppose faster relaxations in Flanders
Tuesday, 27 April 2021
Several Belgian politicians have condemned a proposal by Flemish Minister-President Jan Jambon to relax measures in Flanders if its vaccination rate overtakes the rest of the country.
“If the gap becomes wider, that will be an element that we will have to make decisions about,” said Jambon, echoing earlier comments from Flemish Health Minister Wouter Beke.
The rest of the country, however, is less convinced with the proposal.
Brussels Minister-President Rudi Vervoort stressed that “vaccination is not a race,” adding that the Capital-Region vaccinated a lot of people who work in residential care centres in Brussels but do not live there, for example.
“Solidarity is necessary in these times,” Vervoort told Bruzz. “The most important thing is that we vaccinate as many people as possible now, and make sure that our hospitals are not overcrowded.”
“Only relaxing the rules in Flanders would be a big draw for the rest of the country, as our Belgian territory is small and the interactions are many,” he added.
As of Monday 26 April, just over 30% of adults in Flanders have received at least one vaccination dose, compared to 22.7% in the Brussels-Capital Region and 29% in Wallonia, according to figures from the Sciensano national health institute.
According to the president of the Brussels regional DéFi party François de Smet, the lower vaccine uptake in Wallonia and Brussels is a real problem, which should not be ignored.
La plus faible adhésion vaccinale en Wallonie et à Bruxelles est un vrai problème, qu’il ne faut pas éluder.
Mais en faisant flèche de tout bois dans cette crise sanitaire, le nationalisme confirme que le repli sur soi et l’égoïsme sont ses seuls projets. Lamentable. https://t.co/DtSN7jhk5y