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Editor of Vasárnapi Hírek leaves suspecting owners’ pact with government

January 31st, 2017

Zoltán Gál accuses leading socialist personalities of sacrificing him and choosing a more moderate colleague of his as joint editor of Népszava and Vasárnapi Hírek as a result of a deal with governing forces.

In his last editorial in Varásnapi Hírek, Zoltán J. Gál writes that he has been removed from his job because he would refuse to dampen the paper’s tone in order to get more ads from the government and enterprises under its influence. He quotes his last week’s editorial where he wrote that socialist leaders were inclined to strike immoral deals with the government on account of their lack of clear ideas and of the huge debt their party has accumulated over the past few years. He adds that the offshore company behind Népszava and Vasárnapi Hírek is owned by left-wing people, but they need commercial revenues to keep the two left-wing newspapers afloat.  (Népszava and Vasárnapi Hírek will merge this year while keeping both brands alive, with Vasárnapi Hírek becoming Népszava’s Sunday edition. The original candidate for editor in chief was Gál himself, but last week the owners finally opted for Népszava editor Péter  Németh  instead. Gál served for two years as PM Ferenc Gyurcsány’s press secretary and as an MSZP MP from 2006 to 2010.) Without mentioning Péter Németh by name, Gál writes that his successor values being editor in chief more than fighting for radical change. Nevertheless, he encourages his readers to remain faithful to the two newspapers, whose journalists will continue to stand up for their principles against anyone who might try to prevent them from acting as a check on the government.



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