Budapest, September 16 (MTI) – The Constitutional Court’s rejection of a supreme court ruling which would have allowed a referendum to go ahead on the question of the right of men to retire after 40 years may well have been made by a body solely comprising Fidesz lawyers, the Socialist Party said on Wednesday.

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Nandor Gur, a Socialist lawmaker, told a news conference that it appeared that the Constitutional Court had taken political orders.

The Constitutional Court on Tuesday ruled that a decision by the Kuria, Hungary’s supreme court, approving a referendum initiative on allowing men to retire after 40 years of work is unconstitutional.

The ruling means that a referendum cannot be held on the issue.

The Kuria’s ruling overrode a decision by the National Election Committee that rejected the referendum question on equal early retirement rights for women and men, the Constitutional Court said on its website.

Following the supreme court’s ruling, trade unions began collecting the 200,000 signatures required by law for calling a referendum, but several individuals and lobby groups submitted complaints to the Constitutional Court, which had been set to publish its official ruling next week but decided to make an early announcement due to the ongoing collection of signatures.

The Kuria will now have to issue a new ruling on the matter, taking into account the Constitutional Court’s decision. The National Election Committee will then have to decide, based on the Kuria’s ruling, whether or not to certify the referendum questions.

The Socialist politician said it was certain that the trade unions would have been able to collect the relevant number of signatures for the referendum to go ahead. However, Fidesz used every formal means to undermine the possibility of people having a free choice. “This is as low as you can get.”

He said the Socialists were determined to support every possible initiative that promotes equal rights.

Radical nationalist Jobbik said in a statement that the party would not abandon its campaign to introduce the measure. Men should have the same rights to enjoy their final years of life as women, the statement said, adding that the ruling Fidesz party wanted men to work until they dropped dead.


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