Entries RSS Feed Share Send to Facebook Tweet This Accessible version

LMP protesting against “oligarchs”

July 13th, 2012

In a comment on the LMP’s protest action against what they consider the government’s clientelism and corruption, one left-wing commentator criticizes the party for what he considers an ineffective theatrical performance. The leading left-wing daily, on the other hand, contends that the LMP managed to make its point, while a pro-government columnist considers the protest unserious.

LMP politicians and activists chained themselves to the gates of the headquarters of Közgép, a construction company they claim is a close ally and client of Fidesz. Közgép has in the past two years been proclaimed the winner of dozens of multibillion Forint government tenders. The LMP claims that the government channels public money to Közgép, a company owned by Lajos Simicska, a former Fidesz treasurer. According to the opposition party, Közgép undertakes construction projects at prices exceeding the regular market rate – a claim which Fidesz used often before 2010 against the mostly foreign companies contracted by the former Socialist-Liberal coalition government. The demonstrators were detained by the police and have since been fined. Fidesz spokeswoman Gabriella Selmeczi rejected the accusations and hinted that opposition parties promote the interests of certain investors by attacking Közgép, which she described as an independent Hungarian company which gives jobs to Hungarians and pays taxes to the state coffers.

In Népszava, Richárd Molnár accuses the LMP of empty populism. The left-wing columnist writes that while the LMP managed to attract media attention with this stunt, its demonstration will have no political significance whatsoever. Oligarchs will not be frightened and corruption will not be defeated, Molnár suggests. He adds that if the LMP genuinely wanted to put an end to the rule of Fidesz, it should instead cooperate with the left-wing democratic opposition parties in order to defeat the governing party at the next election.

The LMP is a rather weightless party, which can only get reported in the news if they are handcuffed and arrested, Népszabadság writes in a front page editorial. But despite this, the LMP’s performance was effective, the left-wing daily believes. Népszabadság points out that by defending Közgép, Gabriella Selmeczi openly admitted that the government does have close ties to the construction company.

In a brief ironic comment in Magyar Nemzet, Ágnes Seszták downplays the importance and seriousness of the LMP and its initiatives. The pro-government columnist contends that the LMP criticizes all government proposals even before their implementation. Seszták believes that the LMP wants to increase its popularity with far-reaching and unsubstantiated accusations.

Tags: , , , ,