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In the Hungarian village of Kispalád (Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg County), there were approximately 605 residents registered in 2013, but four years later this number increased by more than its double to 1,347. This year, the number of residents decreased again, and at the beginning of 2019, there were “only” 1,044 people in the village not far from the border.

Hungary’s population shrinks by 41,300 in 2018

Népszava wrote that residents of the village believe that this phenomenon is due to the constantly changing number of Kispalád’s population as before last year’s election a significant number of Ukrainian people, who got the Hungarian citizenship, moved into the country because of the favourable pension and the free healthcare system. Moreover, they could take part in the elections in 2018.

Although the situation with Kispalánta is different because more than 200 foreign people were registered as residents. László Helmeczy, lawyer and politician of the DK, even reported this case to the authorities as a crime against the election policies. This report was followed by many more.

Answers to these reports never arrived, but allegedly the registrations of the residents were supervised again. The police did not share any information regarding this matter, and the local government of the county reported that there are no certain parts and areas of the village with more than 200 residents in the same street or neighbourhood.

It is not unlikely that these 300 people decided to move out of the village and to register themselves as citizens in the nearby villages and towns in the county. This is something hard to oversee, even for the authorities and local governments. One major recently reported that due to the new privacy policy law he has no authority to examine the data of registered residents and even notaries get permission in extreme cases.

This major added that his town’s population increased by 50 residents whom they do not know or see walking around. In Ricse (Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén County) another major reported that they were only capable of sorting out the non-Hungarian speakers because they followed strict rules while registering the arriving people. Some of them realised this strict procedure and left to another town later.

According to local residents, they emphasized that Ukranian people with double citizenship can take part in the local and the EU elections because it is legal, but on the other hand they are living a hard time with these “plastic Hungarian people” because Ukrainian cars and people can be seen from the doctor’s appointment to the local market. Some of them do not even live in the Hungarian village.

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“When the pension arrives they just send someone who gets out of the car, goes to the ATM with ten different credit cards, takes the money, and drives back to Ukraine.” – as told by one of the residents.

Featured image: Daily News Hungary


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