The novel coronavirus outbreak has shown once again the importance of a strong social state, the leader of the main opposition party has said, urging that the focus of the economy should shift from attaining maximum profit to providing a humane life standard for everybody.
“This virus has shown us the reality of a [need for a] ‘social state,’ meaning a people-oriented state that embraces people,” Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), said in an interview broadcast on Instagram over the weekend.
“We should hit the road from this point. Thus, we should shift from attaining maximum profit to providing a humane life standard for everyone. I believe that a new world order will be established within this framework,” he stated.
The states will have to prioritize social policies in the post-pandemic world, and this will prevent the authoritarian regimes from strengthening, Kılıçdaroğlu said, “I disagree with suggestions that authoritarian regimes will further strengthen. On the contrary, I think they will weaken in this process as interest for social states will grow.”
Turkey, like many other countries who suffered from the spread of the virus, has pledged support to the ones who have been severely hit by the halted economy, he recalled, “In this regard, Turkey should also improve its social policies by following a healthy and consistent strategy. The first leg of this strategy should be about further expanding the capacity of the Turkish health care system.”
The fight against unemployment and poverty should make the second and third of this strategy, the main opposition leader emphasized, repeating his call on the government to introduce a family insurance system to provide aid to all the households in need.
Gov’t informs CHP on COVID-19 efforts
Kılıçdaroğlu stressed that he sent a report on the fight against the pandemic penned by the CHP’s own Science Board to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and all the political parties in the recent weeks.
“Mr. Erdoğan has later sent me a report on [the fight against] COVID-19. This report came to me yesterday at 11:00 p.m. It includes all what has been done [in the anti-virus fight]. I am of the opinion that face-to-face meetings and hearing criticisms will have enormous benefits for those who are ruling the country,” he stated.
Turkey’s health personnel ‘best in Europe’
On a question about Turkey’s performance in the fight against the virus, Kılıçdaroğlu has praised Turkish medical doctors, nurses and all other health care personnel.
“Our health squad is the best in Europe. One has to admit this. Second, our population is much younger than many countries with the highest fatality rates. Turkey’s population will start to grow old by 2035. We should not underestimate these two points,” he said.
Hurriyet Daily News