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House Speaker Urges “Calm Governance” Instead Of “Major Changes”

Tamás Székely 2015.04.27.

Calm, composed and sober governance is needed in Hungary, and a line must be drawn under the “extreme conditions” of the 2010-2014 period, parliamentary speaker László Kövér said. Addressing a meeting on the Hungarian Civil Cooperation Association (MPPE), Kövér said the government’s job is to implement decisions in a well-considered, prepared and mature way, and communicate them properly. The cabinet has not been able to achieve this so far, and so Fidesz is liable to come in for criticism for these reasons, he said. At the same time, there are few greater successes in Hungarian history than the past four years, he added.

“I don’t want to say that mistakes have not been made, whether in the community or committed by myself,” Kövér said. “Or for that matter by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and ruling Fidesz politicians.” “I don’t want to make excuses and the lessons must be drawn,” he said, adding that the mistake of falling into a state of panic and hysteria should be avoided. “Otherwise it’s over for us.” “Close the doors and the windows, turn off the television and radio, and think about where we are, where we’ve got to over the past five years and what it is that we still have to achieve before 2018,” he said.

László Kövér also gave an interview to newspaper Veszprem Megyei Napló. Despite shortcomings in Hungary’s political development in the past 25 years the system does not require any further major changes, he told the local daily. The House Speaker said that “overall, systemic changes are not now needed and it would be too late for such changes anyway.” People need to pursue a path of middle-class development but the only way for politics to produce such changes is through education, he said, warning however that this is “a long process to bear fruit”.

Concerning failings of the Hungarian system, Kövér said the education system had not been up to the task of providing young people with competitive skills. The privatisation of state-owned assets was unjust and the process “failed to give new opportunities to people who had earlier been denied them.” Hungary’s companies have notoriously suffered from a lack of assets, while problems associated with poverty have not been addressed, Kövér said, adding however that the Fidesz-government had done “a lot” by raising minimum wages and benefits for families as well as providing fostered work to parents and free meals to children.

Concerning the rising popularity of the radical nationalist Jobbik party among young people, Kövér said that he thought the phenomenon would be short-lived. Jobbik has not been in government, therefore its messages might be attractive to young people, he said. “But those young people will become older, and may no longer vote for a party which tries to describe a complex world in sound bites. They will opt instead for another party which, despite all its failings, has produced some achievements,” Kövér insisted. In reply to a question, Kövér dismissed the possibility of his replacing Viktor Orbán as premier, adding he was convinced that Orbán’s political abilities are currently “unparalleled” in Hungary’s political arena.

via hungarymatters.hu photo: Zsolt Szigetváry – MTI


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