Klara Dobrev (r) and Ferenc Gyurcsany – Photo: MTI

Dobrev: DK’s task ahead is to ‘take back the state’

Klara Dobrev, a leading figure of the opposition Democratic Coalition, told party faithful on Friday that the task ahead of the party and its voters was to "take back the state".

“The state belongs to us ten million Hungarian citizens,” Dobrev, a party MEP, said at the first event in a series organised by DK’s “shadow government”.

She said the task was not just to change the government but “replace [Prime Minister Viktor] Orbán’s system and the regime he has built over 13 years”.

The state, she added, must be reorganised along social democratic lines and it must be able to “take care of us all”.

The economy should produce growth for the many, not the few, and the country should “think about tomorrow and the day after that, not just today,” she said.

Dobrev said the state must be held accountable and provide high-quality services across the board.

She said the Fidesz government had deliberately pursued a policy of allowing public health care to deteriorate in the hope this would stoke demand for private health care, and she called for reform of the financing and structure of the sector.

The DK politician also said Hungarian education had “collapsed” and spending would have to exceed the European average to catch up, and she vowed that a DK government would make free and high-quality education a constitutional right.

She said Hungary had returned to a state of poverty affecting millions, but it had a duty to help those who needed it most.

On the subject of culture policy, Dobrev promised to be hands-off, to provide support, and make it accessible to everyone.

She said people did not exist for the economy but vice-versa. Wages of workers are not just an expense but the foundations of an independent life worthy of a human being, she added.

A DK government would introduce a European minimum wage agreement and always be on the side of workers, she said.

It would also make a decent pension a constitutional right, based on a mixed-index calculation for payment rises, she said

She said climate change was already a fact of life and would affect all areas of it, but the green transition must be implemented fairly.

Dobrev said Europe was moving towards a much stronger, closer alliance — a United States of Europe — and it was in Hungary’s interest not to be an outsider but to be part of its core.

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