ATHENS — The "eight-month complacency" shown by the prime minister and his government over the pandemic constitutes "criminal negligence", main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance said in an announcement on Thursday, after Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced a three-week nationwide lockdown starting on Saturday.
"When all the scientists worldwide were talking of a second and harsher wave [of the pandemic], Mr. Mitsotakis' complacency was no mere oversight. It was criminal negligence," the party said.
The main opposition party also slammed the government for "a lack of self-criticism" and said the prime minister had "wearied the Greek people with his contradictions, narcissism and lack of empathy with the burden that each individual citizen has to carry."
SYRIZA noted that the prime minister had been "bragging a few months ago that he had permanently beaten the virus, a few days ago that a second lockdown was inconceivable and until a few hours ago that the measures he announced on Saturday would take us up to December. He was proved wrong in all cases."
"A small dose of self-criticism would be the least one might expect," SYRIZA added, especially over the "inaction in strengthening the national health system, which is already at its limits and the one million citizens stacked like sardines on public transport every day."
The party also criticised the decision to reopen the country to tourism, which it said had led to an increase of cases in August, while calling for tests on all citizens.
The government's policies "left the country and the national health system defenceless and led to a second lockdown. The fragmentary and deficient support measures for workers and businesses lead to an economic and social collapse after the lockdown," the announcement said.