During a visit to a tomato production in the municipality of Vila Franca de Xira, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa explained to journalists how he seeks to reconcile the exercise of his functions with the protection of his health.

The 71-year-old head of state stressed that the "special duty of protection" that those over 70 are currently required to do does not apply, among others, to political office holders, "who must travel, not many, but exemplary, to show what is being done and to support what is being done ".

"This has to be managed sparingly by the politicians who, obviously, in the rest, must do what is the regime of over 70 years, which is what I do", he considered, exemplifying: "I go shopping, properly protected in closed media ".

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said that when he goes shopping, once or twice a week, he wears a mask and also gloves.

"I wear a mask, this is an idea that came to me a little bit of what my grandchildren told me was China's lesson. China has another tradition of using masks", he said.

"But I think that when I go to a commercial store to shop and there is a meeting with more people in a closed environment, I should wear gloves and a mask, so as not to touch food products and other things, packaging and such. It is a form of protection that has been allowing me, apparently, until now, to be negative ", he added.

In addition, he avoids being transported by car: "I now drive my car always - today I made an exception - so as not to come with anyone else".

As for work trips, he understands that one should not "abuse" and, therefore, he adopted as a rule "one a week".

Last Saturday, he visited a pharmaceutical company in Loures and today he wanted to show his support to the agricultural sector. Two weeks ago, he went to see how the reception of homeless people is being prepared in a municipal pavilion in Lisbon, this time without media.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa stressed that these are not trips to visit family members.

"I did not go ashore to Celorico de Basto. I came here for work. I do it once a week, to support sectors of the Portuguese economy. Then, I return to spend the rest of the weekend where I have been all week," reinforced.

Technical meetings with epidemiologists were also added to their official trips, in which members of sovereign bodies have participated, every Tuesday, at Infarmed, in Lisbon.

"But the rest of the time I will be there for Easter days in Belém. As my home is in another municipality, so as not to have to cross several municipalities to reach Lisbon, I stay from Thursday until the following Monday. in Belém, and there I will be scrupulous, I will not make any work visits ", he promised.

In view of the covid-19 pandemic, the President of the Republic decreed a state of emergency, after hearing the Government and with the authorization of the parliament, which has been in force in Portugal since March 19 and has since been renewed for a further period of 15 days, until April 17 .