'A Pão e Água' movement asks the President of the Republic for support and starts a hunger strike

The Movement Survive Bread and Water, which brings together businessmen and catering workers and the like, this Friday called on the President of the Republic to “urgently intercede in favor of the sector”, with some members starting a hunger strike.

Cristina Bernardo

The movement, which brings together businessmen and catering workers, bars, clubs, culture, events, accommodation and taxis, was received this Friday at the Civil House of the Presidency of the Republic, where he revealed that he had the opportunity to “expose his ideas and proposals, asking the President [Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa] to urgently intercede in favor of the sector ”.

“Without concrete and immediate responses to the requests presented, and considering the urgency of measures that support a sector that has already been in agony for nine months, and that, now, with the new restrictions, enters an even more dramatic phase, the Movement does not you have another option than to continue this fight ”, underlines the note.

The movement was represented by Ljubomir Stanisic, José Gouveia and Manuel Salema, and the meeting “came about following a request for a hearing” on November 16, “addressed to the President of the Republic, but also to the Prime Minister, Dr António Costa, and the Minister of State, Economy and Digital Transition, Dr. Pedro Siza Vieira ”.

"Of the three requests sent, only the 'email' sent to the Office of the President received a response, and today the requested hearing has been completed", emphasizes the statement.

For the Surviving Bread and Water movement, although it is not the responsibility of the President of the Republic to legislate, it is “one of its functions to draw the attention of the Assembly of the Republic to any matter that, in its opinion, calls for parliamentary intervention” .

As of this Friday, some members of the movement will be on hunger strike in tents installed in front of the Assembly of the Republic, "as a form of protest and in solidarity with all those who, at this moment, do not have anything to eat", it is also read in the same communiqué.

“For 43% of us, catering companies and the like, who are considering moving towards insolvency. For 19% of us, tourist accommodation companies, who are considering closing their doors. For those who stayed along the way. For the more than 49 thousand jobs lost in the catering and hospitality sector during the third quarter of 2020. For all those who will lose their jobs, their livelihood, the food on the table if the aid does not arrive already ”, he concludes.

The Covid-19 pandemic caused at least 1.433.378 deaths resulting from more than 60,9 million cases of infection worldwide, according to a report made by the French agency AFP.

In Portugal, 4.276 people have died so far, as a result of 285.838 confirmed cases of infection, according to the most recent bulletin from the Directorate-General for Health.

Measures to combat Covid-19 have paralyzed entire sectors of the world economy, with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warning that the pandemic will reverse the progress made since the 1990s in terms of poverty and will also increase inequality.

The IMF predicts a 4,4% drop in the world economy in 2020, with a 4,3% contraction in the United States and 5,3% in Japan, while China is expected to grow 1,9%.

For 2021, the Washington-based organization anticipates a 5,2% growth in the world economy compared to 2020. For Portugal, the IMF forecasts a 10% drop this year, followed by a 6,5% recovery for 2021.

These forecasts still differ from those of the Portuguese Government, which foresees a fall in the economy of 8,5% in 2020, and a recovery of 5,4% in 2021.

The European Commission anticipates a 9,3% drop in the Portuguese economy in 2020, followed by a 5,4% growth next year.

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