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DK criticises paedophilia law

Socialists, Parbeszed lambast next year’s budget

Hungary's recently adopted 2022 budget is a "fata morgana" designed to "benefit one percent" of the population, the opposition Socialist and Parbeszed parties told an online press conference on Wednesday. Imre Komjathi, deputy leader of the Socialist Party, said that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán "sees a minimum wage rise on the horizon, but as we are getting closer, it will be more and more obvious that it is merely a delusion".

Komjathi called for immediate government assistance to low earners “rather than consultations on a wage hike”, and insisted that “if Orban had meant it he would have found an opportunity to discuss it in the coordination council which the government scrapped in one of its first measures back in 2010”. The government could have had meaningful talks with unions and employers on a minimum wage rise, but they walked out instead, Komjathi said.

Sandor Burany, Parbeszed’s deputy group leader, said that the government “has consistently benefitted the well-off and put burdens on those having a hard life anyway”. “But we think that the budget must be made for the 99 percent,” he said.

Referring to the recent inflation rate of 5 percent, Burany slammed the government for calculating the budget with 3 percent inflation, and said that pensions would only be raised by 3 percent. Under the law, the government will need to compensate the elderly for the difference during the year, but “till then pensioners will be lenders to the state rather than vice versa,” he added.

DK criticises paedophilia law

Hungary’s recent law against paedophile offenders was “designed as propaganda” and it “severely impacts minorities”, the opposition Democratic Coalition (DK) said on Wednesday, adding that the party would tender a “real anti-paedophile” draft which would also focus on paedophile crimes within church organisations.

DK deputy group leader Agnes Vadai told a press conference in front of Saint Stephen Basilica that several sexual crimes against children committed by members of the clergy had come to light in recent years, but the cases “never came before a court” while perpetrators had “stayed within the clergy”. “Most of them are even allowed to work with children,” she added.

According to DK, child molesters should be banned from working with minors for life, and “clerics must not be an exception”.

Referring to legal stipulations that sexual crimes committed against children must be reported, Vadai suggested that that obligation should overwrite the seal of confession, too.

Under the DK draft, the Hungarian Catholic Church could be obliged to conduct a thorough investigation into cases of sexual abuse of children and publish their findings, she said.

Vadai said that the Catholic Church “should not think that all this is against them”, and suggested consultations with them to compile a draft “contributing to the cleansing of the Hungarian Catholic Church”.

LMP slams highway concession as ‘unbridled plunder and destruction’

The opposition LMP on Wednesday slammed the government for “outsourcing public assets” in what they said was “unbridled plunder, destruction and a qualified case of high treason.”

LMP group leader Laszlo Lorant Keresztes told a press conference that the government has called a European Union public procurement tender for a 35-year concession to develop, renovate, operate and maintain the country’s motorway network.

Keresztes warned that outsourcing “vital parts of the infrastructure” would cause immense harm, and said public services and infrastructure should remain national or local council property.

After the election in spring 2022, the (current) opposition will “find a legal path” to recovering public assets which ruling Fidesz diverted into public foundations, Keresztes said.

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