I don’t want to exaggerate the seriousness of the matter but, being aware of what happened in the past weeks, I could hardly do so even if I tried. We must speak completely candidly, because the situation is critical. The elections are already going on, since the citizens with no Hungarian residence already started casting their ballots. We can clearly see the methods and feel the high stakes, too.

Before you say I only tell these things because I’m in opposition, let me note that the Hungarian prime minister just “accused” the opposition of being on Ukraine’s side in the ongoing bloody conflict. If that’s the case, what other conclusion can you draw than Viktor Orbán, by his own admission, is on Russia’s side? Europe seemed to have drawn the same conclusion: the Hungarian government’s last ally, Poland, just turned its back on Orbán earlier this week.

The V4 alliance has practically become dysfunctional, because the other members can no longer tolerate Fidesz’s open commitment to Putin’s regime.

In the meantime, Fidesz has already started to rig the elections. A bag full of opposition votes was found in a garbage dump in Transylvania. The bag contained the ballots of citizens with no residential address in Hungary. Knowing that in the neighbouring countries it is “common practice” for the local Fidesz partner organizations to “help” to deliver the postal votes, it seems obvious what happened here.

These are the circumstances for Hungarian voters to decide what course their homeland should take.

It is undoubtedly an enormous challenge for us, even though the OSCE has sent an unprecedentedly high number of election observers to our country. I hope people realize what is at stake, and cast their ballots accordingly, because if the Orbán government stays in office (even at the expense of serious election frauds), there’s no doubt which way Hungary will go.

By now, Orbán has gradually wrote himself off in Europe: after many years of work, he managed to get himself expelled from the European People’s Party and now, albeit slowly, we are getting to the point where he can no longer rely on EU funds, either. And while the other 26 EU member states hold their breath to see what happens in Ukraine, and support the victims of the aggression, Orbán openly parrots the Kremlin’s propaganda. For him, there is no way back from here.

But the sad reality is that he may drag the whole of Hungary with him, leading our country out of the European Union and establishing a completely Russia-dependent regime.

I can only hope that 3 April will mark the end of Orbán’s reign, and we can resume building a European, democratic Hungary. However, if Orbán stays in power, the European Union may have to think hard how long it is willing to tolerate a Lukashenka-like regime with its serial election frauds and intimidation of its citizens…