Update on Paedophile Scandal in Hungary: PM's Press Chief Describes Media Reports on Orbán & Reformed Bishop as “Stupid”

  • 19 Feb 2024 12:29 PM
  • Hungary Matters
Update on Paedophile Scandal in Hungary: PM's Press Chief Describes Media Reports on Orbán & Reformed Bishop as “Stupid”
The prime minister’s press chief on Monday decried “left-wing press reports” saying that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán “also held [Reformed Bishop] Zoltán Balog responsible for the clemency” granted by President Katalin Novák to a man convicted for helping to cover up child abuse.

Several news websites alleged on Monday that “Balog’s seat as a bishop may be in danger”. Bertalan Havasi called the reports “fake news” and “stupid”. The government and the prime minister do not interfere with matters of the church, and respect their autonomy, he said.

In a post on reformatus.hu, Balog said, “Based on preliminary opinions and information about him [Endre K] and his life, I agreed with granting him pardon, but I was wrong and I made a mistake,” adding, “I apologise to everyone I must apologise to”.

Meanwhile, opposition Submits Proposal to Strip Presidents Not Serving Full Term from Allowances

The opposition Párbeszéd – Greens party is submitting a proposal to parliament and starting a petition to strip former presidents from allowances if they haven’t finished their term, the party’s spokesman said on Tuesday.

Presidents resigning due to health condition would be exempt from the legislation, Richárd Barabás said. Barabás said “a failed president” should not receive the same respect as a “president taking their mandate decently to term”.

“Katalin Novák shouldn’t have luxury circumstances … and a gross five million forint (EUR 12,9000) allowance guaranteed by taxpayers,” he said.

LMP Urges Boosting Child Protection

The opposition LMP party has submitted a draft resolution to parliament aimed at reinforcing Hungary’s child protection and welfare system.

Máté Kanász-Nagy, LMP’s deputy group leader, said “the current scandal shows the need for serious government intervention” adding that the proposed measures would “ensure children’s right to welfare, security, a safe environment and education.”

The proposed measures include mandatory psychological screening for jobs involving work with minors, including foster parents. Under the proposals, both child-care institutions could benefit from increased normative subsidies and their employees from a payrise.

LMP would double the family benefit, which has not been raised since 2008, and index it with the rate of inflation each year, Kanasz-Nagy said.

He also urged stricter punishment for “people approaching minors in their care with the intent of abuse or make statements to that effect.”

Balog Resigns as President Of Reformed Church Synod

Reformed Bishop Zoltán Balog resigned as president of the Synod of the Reformed Church in Hungary on Friday.

He said he was resigning for the sake of the church. He said he had made a “grave political error”, but in a case of clemency.

He said he had requested clemency for someone, “and if for that I must leave now, do not think that that will be a solution”.

​​​​​​​Balog said he was “stepping back” because the unity of the church was more important to him “than to allow it to be torn apart

MTI Photo: Zsolt Szigetváry

You're very welcome to comment and discuss this, and enjoy more stories, via our Facebook page: 
Facebook.com/XpatLoopNews + via XpatLoop’s group: Budapest Expats - The International Community

You can subscribe to our newsletter here:

Do you want your business to reach tens of thousands of potential high-value expat customers?
Then just contact us here!

  • How does this content make you feel?

XpatLoop Media Partner

Hungary Matters

Launched in January 2014, this newsletter published on week days covers 'everything you need to know about what’s going on in Hungary and beyond', according to its publisher the state media agency MTI.

Explore More Reports