Opposition parties and civil groups staged a demonstration in front of the presidential palace in Budapest’s Castle District on Friday evening.
The protest was held under the motto “Shame on you, János!” after President János Áder signed a new law under which the maximum of overtime work could be raised and another one introducing a system of administrative courts.
Anna Donáth, deputy head of the Momentum movement, welcomed that protests are held “not only in Budapest but in other cities, moreover, across Europe” against the Hungarian government’s policies. “Let 2019 be a year for resistance,” she added.
Socialist board member Balázs Bárány said that people have had enough of the government’s propaganda depicting protesters as “Soros-agents and anti-Christians” and added that the government “had better get used to a different style of opposition politics from now on”.
Tamás Szűcs, head of teachers’ union PDSZ, said that “there cannot be another agenda for January than to stop the country”.
Csaba Gyüre, deputy leader of conservative Jobbik, said that “we will not be slaves in our own country!” He also demanded that the president should be directly elected rather than by parliament.
Independent MP Ákos Hadházy said that the “illegitimate laws” could be annulled if the protesters “demonstrate power”.
Párbeszéd co-leader Tímea Szabó carried a puppet with Áder’s features and said that “the president is no other than Viktor Orbán’s puppet”.
László Varju, an MP of the Democratic Coalition, said “it is time that the people ousted the mafia-state” and added that “if Orbán wants peace he should resign”.