Miklós Molnár, the deputy mayor of Szombathely, has been stripped of his powers, the communications chief of the municipal council said. Molnár’s duties, which so far included economic development, budget and finance, as well as the supervision of several city-owned companies, will be taken over by the mayor and deputy mayor Károly Illés, Andrea Barki said. Mayor Tivadar Puskás, of ruling Fidesz, told the local paper that Molnár had “betrayed the right-wing civic community, which entrusted him with his post in 2014.”
Molnár on January 8 voted with the opposition to hold an extraordinary council session, which then ruled to bar companies owned fully by the city from raising the threshold of overtime work. The ruling came after an amendment to the labour code raised the threshold of overtime from an annual 250 hours to 400, prompting demonstrations nationwide. Molnár did not vote in favour of the resolution. The opposition also called on Szombathely’s MP, Csaba Hende of Fidesz, to initiate the scrapping of the amendment.
Puskás told the paper that Molnár, who is a member of the Pro Savaria Association, has signed a written agreement with the governing Fidesz-Christian Democrat alliance to consult with the city leadership before any vote and support its agenda. Pro Savaria has called on Molnár to resign.