Opposition Party To Hold Sunday Rally Despite National Election Committee Ban

  • 30 Sep 2016 9:00 AM
Opposition Party To Hold Sunday Rally Despite National Election Committee Ban
Opposition party Dialogue for Hungary (PM) intends to hold a political rally outside parliament this — the day Hungarians vote in the national referendum on the so-called settlement quota—despite yesterday’s ruling by the National Election Committee (NVB) that such an event amounts to illegal campaigning on the day of an election.

PM co-chairman Gergely Karácsony (pictured) told ATV that PM organized the “day of non-violence” event to coincide with the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian activist who pioneered the use of peaceful civil disobedience.

By a vote of 9 to 3 the NVB ruled yesterday that the event constituted an election rally which, by law, cannot be held on the day of national elections, reports index.hu. PM has five days to appeal the decision to Hungary’s highest court, the Curia. The committee convened after two “private persons” (one of which was Fidesz deputy chairman Gergely Gulyás) formally objected to the fact that PM and the Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP) were holding separate events on the day of the election.

Although the NVB did not take up the issue of the MSZP family event planned for Sunday at Wednesday’s meeting, upon learning of the NVB ruling, MSZP decided to cancel. Instead, it is organizing a demonstration at the seat of the NVB for Saturday morning.

Take it up with the police

Pointing out that the ruling has yet to come into force, Karácsony told ATV there was no reason for his party not to hold the event, as PM had obtained the requisite permit from the Budapest police.

“I think (the event) has nothing to do with the referendum and that the National Election Committee inappropriately interpreted the law, and that really their dispute is not with us but with the police,” he said. “The reason for this is that we reported the event about a month ago when it was already possible to know that there will be a referendum on October 2nd.

I think the police know the applicable laws when they issue permits to hold this event. So all I can say is thank you Fidesz and the election committee for the free advertisement and for the opportunity to talk about this,” said the mayor of Budapest’s District 14 (Zugló).

Source: The Budapest Beacon

Republished with permission

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