Budapest, May 1 (MTI) – László Botka, the mayor of Szeged and the Socialist Party’s candidate for prime minister, called for the introduction of a subsistence minimum on Monday.
Speaking at the opposition party’s May 1 event in Budapest’s City Park, Botka said “it’s time to chase away Orbán’s government”, which, he said, “is not a government of the people and does not appreciate workers”.
Referring to the anniversary of Hungary’s accession to the European Union in 2004, Botka said Hungary had a dream, that of belonging to the European family of free and independent nations, but added that this dream had since been destroyed. He said the Socialist-Liberal governments in office before 2010 had failed to realise the threat of the global economic crisis and Hungary became one of the big losers, with workers feeling that there was nobody to represent their interests. It was this dissatisfaction that Viktor Orbán exploited, he said. “Since then, they have not just destroyed our dreams but depleted our future as well”, he added.
Botka said “Fidesz has betrayed and ruined the country”, dismantling democracy and pocketing the nation’s wealth. “It’s time to chase away this government”, which makes Hungarians “[Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s bonded labourers”, he said.
The Socialist politician called for protecting workers and reducing income and wealth inequality, strengthening trade unions, taxing luxury and creating a broad middle class.
Botka said the Hungarian state should guarantee a subsistence minimum for everyone who has worked throughout their lives and who has legal employment. Neither wages, nor pensions should be allowed to move below this level, he said.