If that's what it takes, let there be a revolt!
Jobbik's president Gábor Vona announced on 18 November that he was going to make 18 important statements on the 18th day of each month to lay the cornerstones of a future people's party programme and the pillars of the bridges to connect the different segments of Hungarian society. In his press conference on Sunday, Jobbik's spokesman Péter Jakab asserted that they were going to remove Fidesz and "Orbanism" from power because Hungary was not Orbán's personal fiefdom even if the Prime Minister seemed to consider it as such.
President Vona also announced his second personal pledge of the "Vona18" series: his party is going to fight even harder to eliminate wage inequalities in Europe. To that end, he wants to launch an EU referendum known as the European Citizens' Initiative so that the "European wage union" could be enacted as a fundamental principle of the EU.
"Equal wages for equal work!" this is how the party president laid out the expectations. Explaining the technical details of the referendum, Mr Vona said that one million signatures need to be collected in seven EU member states within a year for the European Commission to put the issue on its agenda. The party asks for the help of Hungarian NGOs and trade unions for this project and they are contacting foreign allies as well.
In Jobbik's view, the concept of a "European wage union" is morally just, legally feasible and economically useful.
Photo: Balázs Béli/Alfahír
Talking about the justification of the initiative, Mr Vona explained that the citizens of the countries joining the EU in 2004 or later, including those of Hungary, had certain social and living standards expectations which were never met, in fact, the gap between the old and the new members just widened even more. "Our prices match those of Western Europe but our wages don't. The reason is that Western member states were very efficient in representing their corporations' interests in the accession talks," the president claimed.
He added that Hungarian citizens did not join the EU to give Lőrinc Mészáros a luxury yacht, Antal Rogán a helicopter and Viktor Orbán a narrow-gauge railway. "How many times did Viktor Orbán bang on the table for wage equality, even though he likes to pose as a freedom fighter?" "He never did," Mr Vona answered the rhetorical question. He also pointed out that the PM, talking to Saudi investors just recently, had advertised Hungary as the land of high-quality yet very cheap labour force.
"Viktor Orbán has never considered EU wages as the norm," Mr Vona quoted the PM's statement made in November. The opposition party leader categorically condemned this approach and emphasized that he, on the other hand, very much considered EU wages as the norm.
In the party president's opinion, if the EU decides to enact the concept of a European wage union as one of its fundamental principles, nothing can stop the process. He believes that Brussels "is sitting on the horse backwards" since they are busy building a political union without social and economic harmonization. However, what the people of Europe need is a social and economic union while the political sovereignty of the member states should be respected.
Mr Vona also said that German and French wages cannot be achieved in Hungary overnight but if the concept is not laid out as a fundamental principle, they will never be accomplished. Explaining that the Union was facing a renewal, the president said that the EU's new budgetary term, known as the multiannual financial framework, would begin in 2020, so now is the time to act.
Jobbik believes it is the EU's long-term interest to prevent a potential social disaster caused by the massive emigration from Hungary. In the party's view, a European wage union or a lack thereof would have a major impact on our healthcare, education, public administration and social security system. Reacting to PM Orbán's statement that 2017 will be the year of revolt, the opposition party's president said it would indeed be a year of revolt, but to a different end: Jobbik will revolt for European wages.
Alfahír.hu - Jobbik.com