25th of April: We must respect the time of each institution without disturbances, says Santos Silva

Augusto Santos Silva spoke at the solemn commemorative session of the 25th of April in Parliament

The President of the Assembly of the Republic warned today that the time of each democratic institution must be respected without incidents or precipitation and that populist eagerness threatens to spread like a virus in the public space.

Augusto Santos Silva was speaking at the formal commemorative session of the 25th of April in Parliament, just before the final speech by the President of the Republic, in an intervention that Santos Silva dedicated to the theme of political time in democracy and separation of powers.

«Here in Parliament which, under the terms of the Constitution issued in April, is the heart of pluralist representation and free debate, and the center of the dialectic between the Government and the opposition. Now that a certain eagerness threatens to spread, like a virus, in the public space, jeopardizing precious advantages of the solid democracy that we are, internationally recognized as such", he pointed out.

The former Minister of State and Foreign Affairs pointed out that in a democracy everything can be questioned, that «democratic time is, by nature, fleeting, plastic, differentiated» and that the regime «has mechanisms to avoid the perpetuation of situations that become unsustainable”.

«But democratic time is also cyclical, it has a certain rhythm and duration. And, if the Assembly [of the Republic] works, debating, supervising, inquiring, legislating; if the Government develops and applies its policies, with variable accuracy, and enjoys parliamentary confidence; if the oppositions make way for the formation and affirmation of alternatives; whether sovereign bodies cooperate, respecting each other's competences; if the problems of people and the country are innumerable, and it is the primary responsibility of the different decision-makers to face them – then we must respect the time of each institution, without oversights or precipitation”, he declared.

With Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa listening to him and after receiving a prolonged ovation from PS deputies, Augusto Santos Silva defended that one should «prefer the slow breathing typical of a mature democracy to the panting typical of populist excitement, for the benefit of all ».

«Because, if we all lose the day we accept that political dynamics must be insensitive to needs and the social environment and be guided exclusively by administrative and formal procedures; We will also all lose the day we stop distinguishing between localized errors, however serious, and prolonged and systemic crises, and the day we accept that the life of a parliament or a government – ​​whatever they may be – is dependent on the level of protest from this or that sector, in favor of the published opinion, the perception of the media, the noise on social networks or the evolution of the polls», he stressed, being here again applauded by the PS.