Hungary’s Lawmakers Take Oaths In New Parliament

  • 7 May 2014 9:00 AM
Hungary’s Lawmakers Take Oaths In New Parliament
Hungary’s 199 lawmakers took their oaths on Tuesday at the start of the new parliamentary cycle. Ruling party Fidesz has 117 deputies, its Christian Democrat ally 16 lawmakers, the opposition Socialists 29, radical nationalist Jobbik 23 and green LMP 5 deputies.

Together-PM and the Democratic Coalition have four deputies each and the Liberal Party one deputy, all of them sitting as independents. Fully 13 spokespersons without voting rights will represent national minorities.

President János Áder opened the inaugural session in the morning and proposed that parliament should reelect Viktor Orbán, leader of the Fidesz party, as prime minister. The result of the April 6 general election must make everyone aware that the Hungarian nation considers the “lengthy process of regime change as completed”, Ader said.

László Kövér was re-elected as Hungary’s speaker of parliament in a secret vote with 171 votes in support, 19 against and 3 abstentions.

Hungary’s newly formed parliament is the “first that represents the entire nation,” Kövér said in his address, referring to ethnic Hungarians living beyond the borders who voted for the first time in a Hungarian general election. Deputy speakers were also elected. Unlike the other deputy chairmen who enjoyed almost unanimous support, radical national Jobbik’s Tamás Sneider was elected with 150 votes in favour, 35 votes against and 5 abstentions.

E-PM and LMP objected to Sneider’s nomination, citing his “fascistic” past. Leftist lawmakers supplemented the text of their oaths. Leftist Democratic Coalition MPs said: “I undertake to do everything to establish a new republic. I will use all my strength to ensure that the Hungarian Republic has a new constitution via a referendum.” MPs of the E-PM party also added to their oaths.

Timea Szabó, the party’s co-leader, said they promised to “restore constitutionality and respect for human rights, take Hungary back to the community of countries with European values and create social peace, solidarity and the conditions for growth.”

Green party LMP wants the constitution changed so that it is obligatory for a debate to be held on the government’s programme at the founding session of parliament alongside the election of the prime minister.

András Schiffer, the party’s parliamentary group leader, told journalists that it was “more than appalling” that Fidesz and its Christian Democrat ruling ally had not promulgated its government programme.


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MTI photo: Soós Lajos

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