The pro-government Civil Unity Forum (CÖF) on Monday denied that it had spent money received from state-owned energy company Magyar Villamos Művek (MVM) on a poster campaign depicting opposition leaders Ferenc Gyurcsány and Gábor Vona.
CÖF reacted to radical nationalist Jobbik lawmaker István Szávay’s Sunday statement that Jobbik had filed a report against an unidentified individual with the Budapest police after MVM failed to reveal why it had donated 508 million forints (EUR 1.6m) to CÖF last year even though the head of the data protection authority had instructed it to do so. Szávay said MVM’s silence on the matter further heightened suspicions that CÖF had used the monies to pay for a “clown billboard campaign” aiming to discredit Jobbik and “bunch together” Jobbik head Vona with the opposition Democratic Coalition leader.
CÖF said in a statement that Szávay’s accusations only served to further diminish “what little is left” of Jobbik’s credibility.
The pro-government organisation said it would give an account of its contract with MVM in due time. Jobbik, in the meanwhile, should provide answers concerning its poster campaign, CÖF said, adding that Jobbik had “most probably” financed its campaign from public monies illegally.
Attila Péterfalvi, the head of Hungary’s data protection authority
NAIH, instructed MVM in a letter at the end of September to produce information on the donation within 15 days,
but six week later it had not done so, Szávay said on Sunday.
featured image by Balázs Béli, depicting Gábor Vona