Good evening. The Monday, February 7 edition of Today in Slovakia is ready with the main news of the day in less than five minutes.
Bratislava mayor and chair of Bratislava region want to retain positions
The first candidates for the mayor of the capital and chair of Bratislava self-governing regions are known - incumbent mayor Matúš Vallo and incumbent chair Juraj Droba seek to retain their positions.
Matúš Vallo is establishing a municipal party along with his team; Droba did not rule out that they will further cooperate in the pre-election campaign. The negotiations are still ongoing.
The joint regional and municipal elections are expected to take place in autumn of 2022. In these two types of elections, foreigners with permanent residence in Slovakia can run for the position and also vote.
Monoclonal antibodies will be no longer available
People who tested positive with Covid who would like to be treated with monoclonal antibodies will soon have no access to this kind of cure.
The reason is that they do not work against the Omicron variant, which is prevailing in Slovakia. Some hospitals in Slovakia have already stopped using monoclonal antibodies and the Health Ministry expects all hospitals across the country to stop using monoclonal antibodies in about a week.
Monoclonal antibodies have been given to 9,504 patients so far, an insignificant number when compared with the number of fully vaccinated people. Nearly 2.7 million people have been administered two Covid vaccine doses, which represents more than 49 percent of the Slovak population.
The vaccine is about one-third more efficient in fighting Covid than monoclonal antibodies.
More coronavirus and vaccination news
- 9,965 people were newly diagnosed as Covid positive out of 17,97 PCR tests performed on Sunday. The number of people in hospitals is 1,909 people. 15 more deaths were reported on Sunday. The vaccination rate is at 50.94 percent, 2,801,516 people having received the first dose of the vaccine. More stats on Covid-19 in Slovakia here.
- Home isolation in the case of people who tested positive on Covid is five days, according to the current ordinance of the Public Health Authority. However, a person who recovered from Covid can ask for the EU Digital Covid Certificate at korona.gov.sk only on the 11th day since the PCR test came out positive.
- Australia has opened its borders to fully-vaccinated tourists as of February 21. One of the strictest and longest-lasting travel measures during the pandemic will thus come to an end.
- Greece relaxed conditions on arrival to the country – they will no longer require showing a negative test, an EU vaccination certificate will be enough. Unvaccinated people will still have to show a negative PCR test for coronavirus, not older than 72 hours or the negative result of an antigen test not older than 24 hours.
Video of the day
A family of wild boars wandered the streets of Bratislava. Several videos sent to the police capture them wandering along the tram line near Nábrežie Armádneho Generála Ludvíka Svobodu Street.
Feature story for today
Robert Fico only flirted with Russia until 2014. Why is pro-Russian rhetoric working so well for the current opposition?
The Sme daily set out to discover how the public opinion on Russia has developed since the 1990s, how politicians used it for their aims, and why they could not have benefit from this if it had not been for the leader of the 19th-century national awakening movement, Ľudovít Štúr.
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In other news
- Aluminum producer Slovalco has shut down almost half of its production. At the end of last year, the company idled 47 furnaces, and another 44 have been taken offline. Currently, a mere 135 out of 226 furnaces are in operation in Žiar nad Hronom. The company attributed the gradual reduction in production to the high price of emission allowances and the government's inaction.
- Problems with personal train transport in the area around the capital continues. The Slovak Railway Company (ZSSK) cancelled almost 70 connections in the week between February 7 and 11 for the regional lines in the west of the country. The reasons are the lack of engine drivers and a serious failure of the signaling equipment at the Bratislava-Petržalka railway station.
- Police accused another Catholic priest of sexual abuse. He had reportedly sent a girl erotic photos and messages since she was 13 and also sent her to confession after sex. The church knew about the accusations, but he remained a priest and was made chaplain of another parish. (tvnoviny)
- Profesia.sk published a record number of job ads in January, specifically 30,270. Most job ads were in trade, production and information technologies. Ads in those three areas were about 48 percent of all job-ads.
- In the first month of this year, 734 debtors in Slovakia filed for personal bankruptcy, according to an analysis drafted by the CRIF - Slovak Credit Bureau. In January 2021, the number of personal bankruptcies reached 297. The number of personal bankruptcies thus grew 147.1 percent y-o-y. In monthly terms, their number dropped 17 percent from 884 in December 2021.
- The proportion of women on the boards of the largest companies in Slovakia is 25 percent, which is more than anywhere else in the world. A global average of just 19.7 percent of board seats are held by women, a 2.8 percent increase compared to data published in 2019. This information ensues from the report Women in the Boardroom: A global perspective published by Deloitte Global.
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