Prime Minister Andrej Babis called on Health Minister Roman Prymula to resign or else be sacked after being photographed at a restaurant Wednesday night in breach of the government’s strict coronavirus restrictions.
Babis called Prymula’s behavior shocking.
“There’s no other solution than his resignation from the post,” Babis said. “It shouldn’t have happened.”
Babiš also asked Jaroslav Faltínek to resign as the first vice-president of the ANO movement due to a meeting with Prymul in the restaurant.
The Prime Minister will discuss the Minister of Health’s change in the afternoon with President Miloš Zeman. “Although he expressed doubts about this step, I will visit him today and solve the situation with him,” he said.
Babiš is quickly looking for a replacement for Prymula. According to him, it is not easy, but he believes that he will choose a successor today to participate in Monday’s government meeting. “I spoke to two candidates. I have to resolve it by the time of the meeting with the President because we are in a hurry,” he said. He ruled out that the previous minister Adam Vojtěch could return to the office.
“What happened is an absolute disaster. It is an absolute shock for me,” Babiš said. When the government is asking people to wear veils even in a car, restricting their movement and closing shops and restaurants, ministers must lead by example, he added. “Such a mistake cannot be excused, and I do not care what Minister Prymula and Mr. Faltynek did there, who they invited there and why. We cannot preach water and drink wine,” he added.
He asked Prymula to resign from the government and Jaroslav Faltýnek to resign from the ANO movement’s first vice-president. “Our government cannot afford to lose further trust, we are all struggling with full commitment, and the minister has been fighting. He is undoubtedly an expert, and I thank him for his work, but this should not have happened,” he said. In terms of trust in the government, he said, there is no other solution than Prymul’s end. “We have to lead by example and follow the regulations. Here they apply – fall, to whom fall,” he said.
According to photos from the daily Blesk, Prymula and Faltýnek were late on Wednesday evening despite a restaurant ban in Prague’s Vyšehrad. Prymula was called upon to resign by representatives of the opposition and ministers from the coalition social democracy, including Deputy Prime Minister Jan Hamáček.
A former Deputy and Government Commissioner for Health Science and Research Prymulu was appointed by Zeman to Minister of Health on 21 September after the resignation of his predecessor Adam Vojtech.