Mr Somers’ comments came less than 48 hours after an interview given by the Flemish Prime Minister Jan Jambon on VRT television in which Mr Jambon said that his government didn’t plan to bring in any additional measures for the time being.
However, on Tuesday morning, Mr Somers, who is also the Flemish Interior Minister, told VRT Radio 1’s morning new and current affairs programme ‘De ochtend’ that urgent action will be required as “if we don’t break the curve now we will face irresolvable problems in 14 days” time”.
Mr Somers, whose home city of Mechelen, is one of the areas in Flanders with a relatively high infection rate, added “This is why we now need to use a well defined period, such as the extended half-term school holidays to try and stop the virus. And we will do this by limiting our social contacts to a minimum”.
Mr Somers believes that we will only succeed if measures are taken that will apply to the whole of Flanders. Local authorities “local authorities are at the end of their tether”, so any additional measures need to come from a higher level of authority.
“The greater the support for the measures, the better. We need to act collectively, and we need to fight the virus with all Flemings together”.