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Opposition Takes Stand Against University Reforms

MTI-Hungary Today 2021.04.09.

Hungary’s opposition parties have taken a joint stand against the government’s policy of putting certain universities under the control of private foundations.

Opposition representatives told an online press briefing on Friday that the government’s chief aim was to gain a financial foothold in the sector.

Gergely Arató of the Democratic Coalition (DK) said EU subsidies totalling 6,000 billion forints would be channelled into higher education in the coming years, and the boards of university foundations responsible for the money would be stuffed with stewards of the current Fidesz-led government.

Outsourcing of Higher Education Continues Despite Uncertainties
Outsourcing of Higher Education Continues Despite Uncertainties

The government has recently tabled the drafts about the transformation of several more universities. The reform involves huge changes, as the state withdraws from the direct supervision of higher educational institutes and appoints foundations instead, meanwhile still providing the funds from the central budget. However, the scheme is still full of uncertainties, critical points, and […]Continue reading

Brenner Koloman of the Jobbik party said the government moves amounted to an attack on the well-being and freedom of all Hungarian citizens, while László Keresztes of LMP said the policy would have a negative impact on the affected cities and regions.

István Hiller of the Socialist Party said Hungary’s higher education system should be “free, high-quality, and autonomous”.

Tamás Mellár of the Párbeszéd party said deep-rooted reforms were unquestionably needed but not at the expense of Fidesz “cadres” drawing down university assets.

Endre Tóth of the Momentum Movement, referring to government lawmakers, said it was “a sad day” on which “133 awful people” voted to “appropriate universities”, and he criticised the “breakneck pace” at which the reforms were being carried out.

In the featured photo:Párbeszéd MP Tamás Mellár. Photo by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI