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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Farmers protest. Questions about the resignation of the Minister of Agriculture, Henryk Kowalczyk. Comments

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Farmers in Szczecin have been waiting for the arrival of government representatives for almost two weeks. In their opinion, the government is not fulfilling the previously concluded agreement, and therefore they are intensifying their protests from Wednesday. In Warsaw, meanwhile, questions are being asked about the dismissal of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture, Henryk Kowalczyk.

Farmers from West Pomerania, manifesting their dissatisfaction with the government’s policy, are intensifying their protest, which has been going on for almost two weeks. There are supposed to be more of them and they want to block the streets of Szczecin, and not just organize symbolic rides. – We have already traveled to Warsaw many times, now we are waiting for the authorities to come to us – they announced.

Farmers want to seal the transport system of Ukrainian grain through Poland, so that it goes to ports and recipients, and does not stay in Poland. Unions are also demanding an aid package in connection with the losses they have suffered due to the leaky system and the invasion Russia to Ukraine.

Farmers continue their protest, they criticize the EU commissioner from PiSTVN24

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Stanisław Barna, one of the organizers of the protest, assessed that the agreement, which the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Henryk Kowalczyk signed last week with other farmers’ organizationswas broken by him.

Kowalczyk’s resignation? Morawiecki answers

The prime minister was asked about the dismissal of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture Henryk Kowalczyk during a conference at the Chancellery of the Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. – All personnel decisions, after political and governmental arrangements, are first made at the right moment, in the right forum, and then we inform the public about them – he replied briefly.

Kowalczyk to resign?  The prime minister did not answer directly

Kowalczyk to resign? The prime minister did not answer directlyTVN24

Jurgiel: I would rather not evaluate prices

Former Minister of Agriculture Krzysztof Jurgiel was asked in the Sejm about how he assesses the work of Henryk Kowalczyk. – I do not know all the conditions, because you need to know how the negotiations with Brussels, for example, regarding customs duties, because this regulation has been in force since May last year. This is where the prime minister and the minister decide, he said.

When asked if he thought decisions on this matter were made in a timely manner, Jurgiel said that he “would not appreciate it”.

Jurgiel was further asked about the statement of Minister Kowalczyk, who in June 2022 turned to farmers, claiming that “in the next six months, grain will certainly not be cheaper.” Jurgiel replied that he had not heard that statement. – Minister Kowalczyk presented his reasoning in this statement. I would rather not assess the prices, because it is really a very difficult matter and can be misled, he said.

Jurgiel: I would rather not evaluate prices, because it is really a very difficult matter

Jurgiel: I would rather not evaluate prices, because it is really a very difficult matterTVN24

“The Minister of Agriculture and his associates buried their heads in the sand”

In the Sejm today, the Deputy Marshal of the Sejm Piotr Zgorzelski, MEP Jarosław Kalinowski and farmers from Mazowsze spoke at the conference about the problems of farmers. Zgorzelski stated that “a wave of agricultural protests is spreading across the country, while the Minister of Agriculture and his associates hid their heads in the sand.”

In his opinion, “today in the Polish countryside, Kaczyński’s doctrine is being implemented, which he revealed (former minister of agriculture) Jan Krzysztof Ardanowskithat it is enough to give a Polish peasant a few pennies and he will vote for it anyway PIS“. – So that sometimes you don’t miscalculate, because today your agrarian policy is to equate the farmer to the ground – summed up Zgorzelski.

He informed that farmers from the Mazowieckie Voivodship present at the conference “joined the motion to dismiss Minister Kowalczyk”, submitted by PSL.

Farmers ask for grain. “Should we sell or wait?”

Bogdan Matczak, one of the farmers present at the conference, announced that if nothing changes, farmers will have to dispose of grain, which will affect food prices. – I am a county councilor, people ask me what we should do with this grain. Should we sell or wait? So far I have not received any responses from anyone. Nobody wants to answer that, he said. – If we do not empty our granaries and tanks, there will be a situation in which we will have to dispose of this grain. It’s a loss for people, for the state – he said.

Other farmers argued that the low purchase prices of cereals and other agricultural products meant that they were unable to recover even the outlays incurred.

Main photo source: PAP/Pawel Supernak

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