Gergely Karácsony, the mayor of Budapest, on Wednesday handing awards to public figures on the Day of the Capital, said the future of the nation’s capital could not be bound up with any one political party or power interest.
In his speech marking the occasion, Karácsony said that in the past cities were protected by walls encircling them. “Today, we are protecting the city by tearing down the walls of hatred, lies, and privilege for the few and opening up a path to freedom, truth, and the majority,” he said.
The city’s leadership is determined for Budapest to be a green, livable, and safe place, he added.
He said the custodians of these goals were “world-class designers, brave artists, determined innovators and entrepreneurs” who embraced good causes. The city, he added, expressed its gratitude to them on this day because their work, expertise and enthusiasm put up a shield against malign interventions.
The title of honorary citizen of the capital went to lyricist Anna Adamis, five-time Olympic champion swimmer Ágnes Keleti, Kossuth Prize-winning actor Gyula Bodrogi, head of the Hungarian Evangelical Brotherhood Gábor Iványi, and choreographer Ferenc Novák.
The title of posthumous honorary citizen went to Kossuth Prize-winning cinematographer Mihaly Raday, architect and preserver of historical monuments Anna Perczel, and Kossuth Prize-winning poet and literary translator Dezső Tandori.
Pro Urbe Budapest was awarded to the actor Judit Hernádi, the Kossuth Prize-winning actor Gábor Máté, the writer and director Béla Pintér, as well as to president of the Hungarian Jewish Cultural Association Péter Kirschner and president of the 100-member Gypsy Orchestra Nándor Farkas.
featured image: Karácsony (right) handing the honorary citizen of the capital award to actor Gyula Bodrogi; via Facebook