Macron defends government’s “democratic” management of pandemic

Paris, Aug 11 (EFE).- French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday defended his government’s “democratic” management of the coronavirus pandemic in response to a wave of anti-vaccine and Covid-19 health certificate protests across the country.

“Far from what some say and those who take advantage of this pandemic to win votes, never in our history has a crisis of this magnitude been fought so democratically,” Macron said from his vacation residence in Brégançon.

In a review of the coronavirus pandemic in France, Macron warned the health crisis is still not over and urged citizens to get vaccinated.

“The health crisis is not behind us, we are going to live with this virus for many more months to come,” he warned.

The French president also warned that the health situation is dramatic in France’s overseas territories, in particular the Caribbean, Martinique and Guadeloupe.

“It’s in the overseas territories where we face an urgent scenario today. If we need to show that vaccination is the most effective means to respond to this Delta variant, unfortunately it is cruelly demonstrated in the West Indies,” he said.

The vaccination rate in these territories is a third lower than in mainland France, with only 20% of the population vaccinated compared to 63% in mainland France, according to official data.

The French president insisted vaccination was the most effective tool to battle the highly transmissible Delta variant and said that the disputed Covid-19 health certificate, which since Monday is compulsory to enter most public places, is the only alternative.

“There are those who are concerned about the health certificate and they are within their rights. But let’s not forget that there are other people, more than we could think, who are reassured by this pass,” he said.

Some 67.5% of France’s population has received at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine and some 56% the full course.

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