The administrators will close the Infant Jesus of Prague, according to them, Babiš would abuse it for a campaign
Update: 16/01/2023 23:56
Issued by: 16/01/2023, 20:33
Prague – The Church of the Infant Jesus of Prague will be closed on Tuesday morning due to the planned visit of presidential candidate Andrej Babiš. The administrators do not want the chairman of the ANO movement to abuse the pilgrimage site for an offensive and provocative campaign. Church rector Pavel Pola told ČTK this evening. At the same time, he apologized to the visitors for the complications. Babiš told ČTK that he did not want to abuse the visit for the campaign. He had been there three times and had not posted it anywhere, he said. Server iDNES.cz later he stated that Babiš decided to cancel his visit to the crown jewels, which he wanted to see in the morning in the St. Vitus Church.
“Due to the timing and media presentation of this visit, we clearly consider it part of the election campaign, which is also conducted in a very offensive and fear-inducing style, and which we definitely cannot identify with,” said Pola about Babiš’s visit to the church. “We do not want this world-famous pilgrimage site and important religious symbol, which is the statue of the Infant Jesus of Prague, to be misused for such purposes,” he added. According to him, Babiš, like others, can visit the church at other times for personal prayers.
Babiš told ČTK that he did not want to abuse the visit for the campaign. He was last there on Jan. 12 and didn’t post anywhere then, although it was shortly before the first, he said. He also noted that he carries the baby jesus he received as a gift with him. Furthermore, Babiš said that unlike the other candidate, the former representative of the Czech army and NATO, Petr Pavel, he is not campaigning aggressively. At the Saturday press conference after the first round of the election, however, he attacked him sharply.
“I’m sorry. I’ll go there another time and no one will know about it,” added the ex-prime minister. He also stated that Pavel had in the church in 2019 a lecture.
Babiš wanted to visit the Church of Our Lady Victorious in Malá Strana, nicknamed the Infant Jesus of Prague, on Tuesday morning. Subsequently, he planned to visit the exhibition of the crown jewels at Prague Castle, but according to the iDNES.cz server, he canceled the visit due to the tense situation. “I’m not going anywhere, everyone is running an anti-Babiš campaign,” the server quoted Babiš as saying.
Babiš announced that he was participating in Tuesday’s vote of no confidence in the government. The start of Babiš’s election campaign before the second round of elections was described by political scientists and commentators as offensive. At the same time, Babiš himself repeated the campaign that he wants to lead a positive one.