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Sign Fight – Revolting Actions Of The Mayor’s Office Of Marosvásárhely (Targu Mures)

Robert Velkey 2017.06.01.

While there have been positive changes in Kolozsvár (Cluj-Napoca) and Zilah (Zalău), there was surprising news recently on the situation of multi-language street-signs and minority rights in other parts of Transylvania.

The employees of the Mayor’s Office started to remove the Hungarian language street-signs in the city of Marosvásárhely, Transylvania (Targu Mures, Romania).

In response,, Levente Vass, governmental representative and president of the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania in Marosvásárhely (Targu Mures) , announced a public protest against this action. On his Facebook page he also posted a picture of the employees of the Mayor’s office “at work”.

Levente Vass said that the first Hungarian language signs had been placed in 2014 by hand with a promise that this action was the first step on the path to making street-signs multi-lingual in the Transylvanian city. The procedure to place signs in Hungarian stopped, however,  in spite of prior promise by the city’s government. To give just one example, the name of Dózsa György street is Gheorghe Doja on the signs.

Enikő Szigeti, the leader of Cemo (a civil organization that works for civil rights) said that, based on information she recieved City Hall, Lucian Goga, the Prefect of the city, directed and ordered the removal of Hungarian-language signs.

However, since 2001 it had been written in the “local governmental law” that use of multi-lingual signs in municipalities where more than 20% of the population speaks a given minority language is required. In tMarosvásárhely (Targu Mures), fully 43% of inhabitants are Hungarian.

Meanwhile what has been happening 100 and 200 kilometers away?

Last week the 21-member council of Zilah voted to change the city signs to tri-lingual ones. The council approved the proposal unanimously.

The first multilingual sign was erected at the Western limit of Kolozsvár almost two weeks ago.