After an internal debate that lasted a week, in Town meeting finally the decision was made not supporting the creation of a parliamentary commission to study the possible adverse effects of the vaccination against COVID-19, a proposal that the deputy Cesar Vega, sole national representative of the Intransigent Radical Ecologist Party (PERI), had transferred the lobbyists in search of support.
The matter had divided the waters within the senator’s community Guido Manini Rios. When Vega asked to enter the parliamentary bench coordination meeting on Thursday, September 9, to make his proposal, he did so with the confidence that there were at least three deputies who were open to accepting his idea. The thing is Elsa Capillera -Vice President of the Lower House-, and the representatives Rodrigo Albernaz and Rafael Menendez, have doubts about vaccines against the coronavirus, and in all three cases they decided not to be immunized.
However, once his personal position and his willingness to face Vega’s proposal – today also one of the main anti-vaccine activists in Uruguay – was made public, the Cabildo intern began to move, and what in the words of Albernaz They were “negative media repercussions” that inclined the party to discard the initiative, according to the deputy in dialogue with El País.
A group called Orientales Unidos -chaired by deputy Silvana Pérez-, for example, had published a statement in which it was stated that it would not support “any type of parliamentary initiative that seeks to question the serious and responsible work” of the health authorities . And it even went further. Pérez went on to point out that he was concerned “that all this denial or anti-vaccination issue is hovering in Parliament,” and that it seemed to him a “tremendous lack of seriousness at the legislative level to be taking a position in favor of these initiatives.”
The division of positions ended up being settled then in the last session of the party’s political table, which took place last Thursday, and in which, among other matters, this issue was addressed. It happened at the initiative of deputy Eduardo Lust – party sources indicated – who recalled that it was pending to resolve this matter and communicate the final decision to Vega. In his case, the concern was to discern what type of parliamentary commission would be appropriate.
The discussion also had the inevitable association with health management carried out by the Minister of Health, Daniel Salinas, today one of the most popular members of the cabinet, according to the latest polls that measure the sympathies that governors gather. And on this there was always agreement: no one in the Cabildo doubts the work of the lobbying secretary of state.
“We wanted it not to be interpreted,” Albernaz said in dialogue with El País, “as we believed was happening, that our position was a sign of mistrust against the minister’s management, which it is our duty to protect.”
Be that as it may, other sources who participated in the meeting pointed out that Manini listened to all parties, and that finally, in order to adopt a common position, he decided that his party’s position would be to reject Viera’s request.
“The deputies most reluctant to investigate or talk about the issue were those who emphasized the negative repercussions that occurred these days, so they asked that the idea not proliferate. And since they were majorities, they ended up adopting their position ”, concluded Albernaz.
The senator and president of the Cabildo Abierto, Guillermo Domenech, He assured El País that this party promotes “civil and religious freedom in its widest imaginable extension”, and that is why leaders who have doubts about vaccination and others – such as Deputy Pérez – who even coexist in the same community they argue that Parliament should have more health controls and request rapid tests or vaccination certificates upon admission.
“As long as we have unity of action, I don’t see any problem,” added Domenech.
Vega seeks support against green pass
Discarded the option of forming a commission due to lack of support, the deputy Cesar Vega He assured that he will also try to carry out, from Parliament, his purpose of investigating the alleged negative consequences of the inoculation against COVID-19. Above all, he said, he is concerned about the effects of the platform combination, as is the case with people who are immunized with Sinovac and are now receiving the third dose of Pfizer.
“I am going to do it from Parliament, even using my office,” Vega said. On the other hand, with the idea of discussing “the green or responsible pass”, he affirmed that on this issue he will also seek to be accompanied by the lobbying deputies, even if it is to generate informal work spaces. He will also go for the support of “Adrián Peña, from the People’s Party” and others who, he assures, are in the rest of the parties and who are open to their proposals.