The nightmare of Orbán’s Romanian pals can now become the new European Public Prosecutor

Romania’s Laura Codruţa Kövesi, who has already put hundreds of corrupt politicians behind bars as the head of her country’s anti-corruption agency, is more and more likely to lead the European Public Prosecutor’s Office to be set up in 2020.

Ms Kövesi has become quite a thorn in the side of Romania’s political elite in recent years, no wonder they don’t support her candidacy for the position. However, conditions are very different in most of Europe than in Romania’s Social Democratic government and at the corrupt business partner of Fidesz and its Transylvanian representative office, the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania (RMDSZ); and they are certainly very different than in Hungary. Laura Kövesi has already suggested that Hungary could set up an anti-corruption prosecutor’s office based on the Romanian example. This institution would be very different from Péter Polt’s useless organization. It would be a real public prosecutor’s office which, at the very least, could press charges in corruption cases like the Elios affairs revealed and documented by OLAF. 

Of course, I have no illusions as to why the Orbán’s regime is not so eager to set up a real, independent (do they know the meaning of this word?) anti-corruption authority, even though such a move could help refute the obviously false suspicion that some people in Brussels are attempting to override Hungary’s sovereignty.

Since it happened twelve years ago, I don’t want to contemplate why Fidesz, despite their recent affection for national sovereignty, joined Ferenc Gyurcsány in blindly voting for the Treaty of Lisbon which provided for a possible European Public Prosecutor’s Office. Regardless of Orbán’s unprincipled political hairpin bends, I believe Hungary’s sovereignty is not there for Orbán and other corrupt politicians to hide behind. Unlike some pseudo-literate scribblers such as György Pilhál working for a propaganda outlet that calls itself Magyar Nemzet, I’m not under political pressure to mix chalk with cheese, so I can proudly say that Jobbik and I have always supported the idea of Hungary joining the European Public Prosecutor’s Office, right from the beginning. European money doesn’t come without European responsibility. Now that the Fidesz regime has reached such a level of corruption that appears on the European radar, punishments should be at a European level, too.

The only goal of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office is to investigate the correct use of European funds and issue the indictment so that the relevant national courts could conduct the proceedings and make an honest decision based on an honest indictment. Today’s Hungarian courts are unable to conduct proceedings because there is no independent Hungarian prosecution which would dare to issue an indictment on corruption related affairs.

It’s a shame that Orbán considers the unlimited theft of funds as the foundation of Hungary’s national sovereignty. However, he represents a small minority in Europe with this opinion. In our region, Poland is the only country which has not joined the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. As far as Western Europe is concerned, the short list of abstainers include the Netherlands and Sweden which, to be fair, don’t get in the news with their rampant corruption or their excessive dependence on EU funds, either. In that regard, they are very much unlike Hungary, where we have become increasingly dependent on EU monies over the past nine years. If these funds are withdrawn or cut, it will certainly reduce the quality of life for the people of Hungary. Especially so, if Fidesz decides to hand out the payments for the government’s pals first and, make no mistake, these people always get their share.

On the other hand, the European Union seems unlikely to tolerate enriching the Hungarian elite from the public funds much longer. In the next budget cycle if you can’t prove that you kept your hands away from the cookie jar, you will be sanctioned, especially if the so often forecasted economic crisis really arrives.

Jobbik is working to make sure that Hungary reaches the top of the EU in the quality of life rather than in terms of corruption. We want a safe and accountable Hungary. That’s why we support the European Public Prosecutor’s Office and holding politicians to account.

 

Published on Márton Gyöngyösi's Facebook account.