Broad-based referendum committee launches referendum against extension of Covid 19 law.

Bern, 16 December 2022

According to today's final votes by the National Council and the Council of States, the Federal Council should at any time - without proof of necessity and without the possibility of judicial corrections - again wide area testing and Access restrictions for all areas of public life (certificate obligation). In addition, the Federal Council should continue to be able to prescribe a monitoring app (contact tracing) at any time.

Because these methods have proven to be unscientific, ineffective and harmful, and because they endanger the basic constitutional order of Switzerland, a broad alliance from the centre of society will collect the required 50,000 signatures for a referendum within 100 days and bring about a referendum on this law.

Five representatives of the referendum committee, consisting of numerous organisations, groups and individuals, appeared before the press today in Bern to explain the necessity of the referendum:

  • Nicolas A. Rimoldi (Co-President of the Referendum Committee, President MASS-VOLL!);
  • Roland Bühlmann (Co-President of the Refendum Committee; Co-President Friends of the Constitution);
  • Andreas Gafner (National Councillor EDU Bern);
  • Michelle Cailler (President Mouvement Fédératif Romand, MFR);
  • Martin Hartmann (Vice-President Libertarian Party Switzerland).


Media contact: 


CH-3000 Bern

1 Nicolas A. Rimoldi

(Co-President of the Referendum Committee) 

calls for reconciliation and a return to normality.

The people in this country have had enough of the pandemic, enough of the measures, enough of strife and discrimination. With our referendum, we are therefore pursuing clear goals. We want

  • Overcome the division of society;
  • end the state of emergency;
  • return to direct democracy.

It does not matter whether someone is vaccinated or not - we are all equal citizens of this country. The pandemic is over, the federal government itself has lifted all measures. There is simply no point in extending the Covid law and thus the possibility of reintroducing a certificate at any time. 

Federal Councillor Alain Berset said before the last Covid law vote in 2021: "With the certificate you can show that you are not contagious." But we all know today that this promise was false (keyword "vaccination lie"). This makes the decision of the federal councillors to extend the Covid law as the basis for the certificate by 18 months all the more useless and incomprehensible.

This law harms society and our democracy. The Covid law is unconstitutional. We must learn to deal with health challenges without causing harm and without endangering democracy.

That's why we say: That's it, that's enough! The measure is full. That is why we - a broad-based alliance of civil rights organisations - are taking the initiative.

2. Roland Bühlmann

(Co-President of the Referendum Committee) 

emphasises that the certificate is neither scientifically based nor of epidemiological benefit. Numerous official sources since summer 2021 have shown that major outbreaks have occurred despite the certificate and regular testing.

The risk of SARS-CoV-2 was massively overestimated, while the negative side effects of the measures on society and the economy were underestimated. 

Children, adolescents and young adults in particular have been the victims of a fear-based policy of measures. Overcrowded children's hospitals and youth psychiatric wards bear frightening witness to this. Dividing people into "healthy" and "sick" divides society. We must finally leave this division behind us.

For all these reasons, we oppose the Covid 19 Bill, we oppose the extension of compulsory testing, compulsory certification and contact tracing.

3 Andreas Gafner

(Member of the Referendum Committee)

Stresses that there is simply no longer any rational reason to extend the Covid 19 Act again. It is time to draw a line under it. A line under a chapter that has caused a lot of controversy, a lot of suffering and massive tensions among the population.

We say no to the divisive Covid certificate and no to the two-tier society. Today we know, for example, that the most central arguments for 3G or even 2G rules have been refuted. Indeed, Pfizer director Janine Small admitted at a hearing before the EU Special Committee that her Covid 19 "vaccine" was not tested before launch to see if it could prevent transmission of the virus. 

The transmission of Covid-19 cannot therefore be curbed with the certificate requirement - which instead excludes and marginalises many people from public life. It is therefore untenable to extend the legal basis for this once again.

Now we should send the right signals: Namely, that the exceptional situation is over and that we are ready to admit and finally come to terms with the mistakes we have made..

4 Michelle Cailler

(Member of the Referendum Committee)

The lawyer points out that the Covid law, as well as the urgent declaration, were based on a non-existent, alleged threat. Moreover, the Federal Council's coercive measures discussed here would not have provided any positive benefit.

 The provisions extended today give the Federal Council special powers that neither the Constitution nor the Epidemics Act grant it: the Federal Council may now continue to reactivate a useless and discriminatory certificate as a means of coercion for an unlimited period. It will thus once again intervene directly in all areas of life and the economy.

He can now do all this without effective scrutiny by parliament and the courts, i.e. without effective legal protection for those affected. The separation of powers is thus abolished.

This shift of power to the executive cements an anti-democratic development that should have been revised long ago.  This permanent postponement is tantamount to a total revision of the Federal Constitution on the quiet, which would only be permissible after approval by a double majority of the people and the cantons.

For all these reasons, fundamental rights and our basic constitutional order can now only be restored by the voters themselves.

5 Martin Hartmann

(Member of the Referendum Committee)

recalls that constitutional fundamental rights are defensive rights against the otherwise all-powerful state. 

This is quickly forgotten in authoritarian times, when fundamental rights mutate into vaccination privileges and are only open to obedient subjects. The constitutional fundamental rights, however, are necessary barriers of the state.

There is little that is as private as one's own health. Personal health is a private matter and does not belong in the political spotlight. Health problems are solved medically, not politically.

Collectivist, coercive state solutions are undifferentiated and impose the same undifferentiated, unreflective one-size-fits-all pap on all people. This disregard for individual freedom and social diversity particularly pains us libertarians. After all, individual responsibility necessarily follows from the individual risk profile. Collective paternalism under the threat of state power is logically the wrong concept - especially here.

The Federal Council may make recommendations, but it must not patronise the voting citizen like a small, immature child. We do not accept the orders of the authorities and insist on our natural and original self-determination. Because we love freedom.

For all these reasons, the referendum committee opposes the extension of the Covid-19 law. The broad-based alliance of civil rights organisations is calling on all the country's voters to hold a referendum against this law.

The collection of signatures will begin immediately after the festive season.

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