Alderman Van Doesburg for Minister Verlinden after announcement about Antwerp vaccination coverage: Volunteers deserve better than cheap sneer” | Antwerp
AntwerpMinister Annelies Verlinden (CD&V) and mayor Bart De Wever (N-VA) had already discussed the issue of security in the neighborhood and the loopholes in the ministerial decree on dancing in nightclubs. But also Antwerp alderman Els Van Doesburg (N-VA) is hard on the minister in a Facebook post this morning. Minister Verlinden noted that Antwerp scores lower in terms of vaccination coverage than the rest of Flanders, and that has been a hit with Van Doesburg. “I don’t make such a statement,” she fulminates.
“On Friday September 3, Antwerp vaccinated 82 percent of adults. As the largest city in Flanders, we have done a titanic job. And yet the criticism is heard again: ‘Antwerp scores lower than the rest of Flanders’”, alderman Van Doesburg started in a Facebook post this morning. Rode? Minister Annelies Verlinden recorded a debate that “Mr De Wever’s Antwerp was still lagging behind” in terms of vaccination coverage.
“If that is invoked reproachfully, all the way to the toes. With pleasure I will indicate our numbers with a beer in hand. But I do not expect such a thing from a minister who co-manages the corona crisis. What’s more: I certainly don’t either,” says Van Doesburg. “Certainly not when you take into account the army of fantastic volunteers who put their souls and souls into the vaccination campaign. She deserved so much better than this cheaper one. It is certainly not the task of the Antwerp vaccination village. About 92 percent of the ‘Shooting of Mrs Verlinden’ was helped in the Antwerp vaccination village. Thanks for the trust, by the way. We have not shamed it.”
In her post, Van Doesburg refers to the metropolitan context of Antwerp. “Seniors couldn’t wait to get vaccinated and resume normal life. In that respect, the urban figures differ from the Flemish product. But in the younger age categories, we see that the urban dwellers differ from the rest of the country. A phenomenon that occurs all over Europe.”
“That is not so surprising. In a city with 178 nationalities, it is not enough to use Flemish newspapers and television if you want to reach everyone. The Romanian conspiracy theories about the vaccine for Antwerp Romanians are much bigger than Marc van Ranst is. Today we fight against language, poverty, conspiracy and culture barriers to protect the community. While many Flemish municipalities only had to provide a needle and vaccine for that high vaccination rate, Antwerp had to fight for those hundreds of thousands of upper arms with their sleeves rolled up. Nobody in Antwerp-North whispers to the baker that “the one from number 14” does not want to get a vaccine. A different approach is needed here, and we have done that.”
“I am not going to point with glee at the Brussels figures, but the differences speak for themselves. Besides, we’re not done yet. We will continue with vaccinations in schools and in the neighbourhoods. I dare to say that those who did not opt for the vaccine in Antwerp did so out of firm conviction. Not because he didn’t get the chance or didn’t understand the message. That is why that figure of 82 percent of the adult is a rock-solid achievement. You will not find diverse cities of more than 500,000 inhabitants that do better.”
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