- 18 Sep 2021 8:43 AM
- Hungary Matters
Marking the 15th anniversary of the leaking of the speech by then-Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány which was followed by protests in Budapest, Orbán said „it had been a terrifying moment of Hungarian politics”.
Gyurcsány had “created that situation, he delivered the speech, lied to the people and came to power through lies…” yet “he has remained the leader of the Left until this day”, Orbán said in an interview with public broadcaster Kossuth Rádió.
“The past still living with us and keeps trying to return,” Orbán said. He insisted that the Socialist-Liberal government had stripped the elderly of their thirteen month’s pension and stopped supporting families, while they “doubled, tripled” the price of household gas and electricity.
The incumbent government, however, “returned all” with a re-established family assistance system, reintroduced housing subsidies and wage hikes, the prime minister said.
“Once pensioners get back their 13th month pensions, we can say that we have left behind the whole Őszöd speech,” he added.
National Consultation Opportunity For People to Voice Concerns
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán highlighted the significance of the government’s recent National Consultation public survey in an interview on public radio on Friday.
“A difficult decade is ahead of us; we will have migration and epidemics and we need to get prepared and it is good if the people are given an opportunity to indicate what are the solid points they insist on,” Orbán said.
Concerning topics in the survey, Orbán mentioned minimum wages, Hungary’s capability to produce coronavirus vaccines, as well as the issue of families.
Elaborating on the latter, he said that the European Parliament “would transfer the education of children from parents to political activists, an endeavour we must oppose”.
He also called for standing the course against the EU over migration and support for Hungary’s rights and sovereignty. The prime minister said that a recent exchange with Pope Francis in Budapest had “reaffirmed” him, and quoted the pontiff as saying that “Hungary’s fight to protect families” was one of the most important efforts for Europe’s future.
He said that the pope had been “straight and tough” in saying that the family could not be relativised, and insisted that families were formed by “mother, father and child; full stop”.
The pope also “sees that there are great forces at work, especially in Brussels… and he spoke as firmly as I have perhaps never been able to. He said that relativisation of the family must not be allowed… and added ‘go ahead’, do it, and we will do so,” Orbán said.
Regarding the coronavirus pandemic, he highlighted the importance of protection against the coronavirus and said that “it is better to get a booster jab than not to get it”. A third jab is available to anyone within two weeks of registration, no matter where they live in the country, Orbán said.
The severity of the fourth wave of the coronavirus epidemic will depend on the country’s vaccination rate, he added. People who refuse to get vaccinated are in danger of getting infected, he said, urging people of all ages to take up vaccination.
At the same time, he said the government would not make vaccination mandatory over the board, because “Hungarians would not tolerate that”.
Meanwhile, Orbán said Hungary remained financially stable after the pandemic, “no matter what Brussels does”, and all post-pandemic developments can be started in time. The funding provided by Brussels to EU member states for post-pandemic recovery is all credit and if Brussels denies the allocation to Hungary for political reasons, “we will go to the money market alone to make up for the missing resources”, Orbán said.
This job has been performed “brilliantly” by the finance minister, Mihály Varga, who has brought this loan to Hungary “in a complicated scheme” under perhaps the most favorable terms of all time, he said.
Orbán said more people held jobs in Hungary currently than at any point since 1990, which is partly why the economy works well. “Everyone should be aware that since 2010, we have built a labour-based economy, replacing Gyurcsány’s benefits-based Socialist-type policies which encouraged people not to work,” he added.
The labour-based economy can be coupled with high living standards if Hungary has access to the EU market of 400 million euros, he said.
As a result, “we will be among the last ones to leave the EU even if it once comes to an end”, Orbán said.