Ujhelyi re-elected as Vice-President of the EP’s Transport and Tourism Committee


 István Ujhelyi has been the vice-president of the Parliamentary committee for the past five years, responsible for tourism-related matters and programs, and will continue to his work in the coming years as well. Following his re-election, MSZP’s politician spoke of the fact that the tourism industry was treated fairly harshly earlier in the European institutional system, but “thanks to our substantial work over the past five years, we have managed to raise this area to the level of its economic and social importance.”
“Tourism is the third strongest industry in Europe, providing work for nearly 25 million people and generating an annual income of nearly € 350 billion. More than half a billion tourists come to the European Union each year, and their number is constantly rising. In 1950, there were barely 25 million tourists registered in the world; this figure rose to 700 million in 2000, and by 2012 it reached one billion, the socialist politician pointed out.
István Ujhelyi stressed that in the past five years he has launched several successful pilot projects for the tourism sector, including the European Capital of Tourism program, the EU-China Tourism Year program series, and the “Youth on the Spot” program, which reduces youth unemployment. The Hungarian MEP was the first to support, as a mentor, the Free InterRail for 18-year-olds proposal, called DiscoverEU.
As regards next year’s priority objectives, the re-elected Vice-President of the TRAN Committee István Ujhelyi said: an urgent task is the tackling of the negative social and regional problems of mass tourism, as well as the promotion of sustainable and eco-friendly tourism, but also highlighted the review of the malpractice of low-cost airlines conflicting with passenger rights.
In connection with the latter, he said that, together with professional organizations and journalists, a “low-cost ethical code” is being drawn up, which will be submitted to the new European Commission soon to begin its work. In the field of transport, Ujhelyi emphasized that he would continue his work to facilitate the automation of transport and ensure safe and clean transport.
In addition to the vice-presidential post of the Transport and Tourism Committee, the MSZP MEP has also become a member of the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee (ENVI). He made a personal commitment earlier that, as a member of the S&D Group, among others as a sort of continuation of the successful green policy work of former MEP Benedek Jávor, he would focus on environmental sustainability and climate policy as priority areas, but as a member of the committee he would like to deal with healthcare issues in particular, mainly with medical emigration and the creation of a European healthcare minimum.


My Learned Colleague, Mr. Deutsch, Allow Me to Help!


15478“Trusting a goat with a cabbage!” many shouted when they read the latest article in daily Népszava about the possibility of Tamás Deutsch becoming deputy chair of the EU Committee on Budgetary Control that regularly monitors the misuse of EU funds and corruption cases.
Indeed, it is quite ridiculous that Balázs Hidvéghi (Fidesz Communications Director turned MEP), world-record holder in indoor Soros and Brussels bashing, has been nominated as Vice -President of the Fundamental Rights Committee, dealing with issues concerning the rule of law. It is also rather peculiar that Tamás Deutsch may be a Vice-President of the Budgetary Control Committee.
This will be the result of next week’s internal voting. It should be added that my colleague, Mr. Deutsch, is an old hand in Brussels and it would not be his first time in the vice-presidential chair of the referenced committee. Should he have the honors, this would be his third term in this position, with a small interval. In fact, there is no surprise; no reason for discontent as there is no new element in the formula. The question is, of course, how the Fidesz MEPs will use these powers.
Tamás Deutsch will be one of the vice-presidents to oversee the efficiency of the EU budget and its compliance with regulations; together with his colleagues they shall oversee the financial management of EU institutions, for example, on the basis of reports by the European Court of Auditors, which formerly had a Hungarian member, Szabolcs Fazakas, whose appointment my colleague, Mr.Deutsch as a member of said commission, tried to prevent by all possible means, reports, leaking and scandals.
But in the same Committee on Budgetary Control, my colleague, Mr. Deutsch sought to obstruct the Sargentini-report on the rule of law in Hungary, later adopted by the majority of the European Parliament. He was so enthusiastic that once he accidentally shed light on one of his own lies.
In a television interview, he claimed that he had been trying to attach modification submissions to the report as the document contained a number of faulty data. He said that, in his view, the number of public procurement procedures that had gone through with a single bid (i.e. played over to Fidesz oligarchs) were much less than the data indicated in the report. Compared to this, the reality soon became clear: none of Deutsch’s modification proposals had a trace in the system, and according to the protocols, at one of the meetings of the Budgetary Control Committee, he himself acknowledged the high number of single-player procurements, although, he said in his defense, that there were similar data  pride in other countries as well, that are nothing to be proud of. Therefore we have none, nor should we have any serious expectations from my colleague, Mr. Deutsch, as a genuine and effective guardian of EU funds and European taxpayers’ money, alongside doing substantial professional work (such as his dossier was on the Eurostat Reform Commission).
Should you nonetheless choose to go down this path, let me offer you some help: I would like to draw your attention to the minority report submitted by the committee to the Sargentini-report. For reading, I would recommend the study on the importance of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office, but for monitoring, I would suggest, among other things, the impact of the Elios-scandal on EU funds, the peculiar use of resources by the ‘Road to Work’ program that suggests the responsibility of Flórán Farkas, the financial growth of Lőrinc Mészáros through EU taxpayers’ money and the links between the single-player public procurement contracts referred to earlier, or the background of Fidesz’ residency bonds that provide access to the European Union. To do this, of course, you would have to want to represent the people of Europe, including Hungarian citizens, after your election as vice-president, rather than representing the interests of the National Cooperation System. These are the two options before all Fidesz MEPs, and you have to make a choice. What is that you always say, my dear colleague, Mr. Deutsch: “That’s it.”

dr. István Ujhelyi
7 July, 2019

No More ‘Peacock Dance!’


The European Parliament will begin its ninth cycle next week. Over the next few days, we will learn a lot more about those to head European institutions, just as the main issues to shape the European Community over the coming years will become clear, and the contours of its directives will be even thicker. A turning point is coming, as the debate on the next seven-year EU budget is underway, moreover, in addition to stopping the forces that aim to eradicate the EU, the community must take concrete steps in critical matters, such as the economic problems that are causing the social crisis or the climate crisis that poses an immediate threat to our lives.
In the newly elected European Parliament, thanks to the wisdom of the people of Europe, there is still a majority of forces that stand for peace and keeping the community together in Europe. Orbán and Fidesz expected that after some display of bravado they would chasse into the corridors of Brussels with their hands in their pockets and blackmail the European with the help of their anti-EU gambler buddies. One of Fidesz’, in fact, outgoing, MEPs, openly admitted that if things were not to happen according to their taste, they would be prepared to create a “blocking minority” with anti-European extremists that would prevent the adoption of the new budget. The same shiny tracksuit black marketeering approach shines through every Fidesz decision, such as when Orbán and Co. explains the veto of European climate goals by stating that the EU should give money first and only then will they discuss the matter. They will also stop global warming after migration, but the kids need a castle first. Crystal clear. Just as the Orbán-government, Fidesz MEPs have also clearly been playing music from Russian score in recent years; they were executors of the ‘Putin Plan,’ if you like, and have probably remained just that. They nearly literally took over Putin’s laws pestering civil organizations, while opening the doors and guaranteeing extralegal status to the Russian development bank under rigorous cover and assisting super power ambitions to weaken the Union with anti-EU propaganda. Just recently, Putin made it clear that liberal democracy was dead in his opinion, and instead the advancement of populism was the way to go. Although Orbán has recently voted for the proclamation of the European People’s Party, which pushed for the strengthening of the liberal value system, he actually keeps reciting Putin’s score: freedom rights, equality and solidarity are terms he cannot make any sense of. Orbán’s famous re-burial speech might be played on loop at festivals; even the sound of the machine cannot hide the Kafka-esque transformation of the young liberal into an elderly comrade.
The European Parliament is launching its ninth cycle in days. The MEPs of Fidesz, who voluntarily had themselves suspended from the Peoples’ Party community, are now facing spine crushing times: they are no longer able to nod and ask for understanding of their anti-Brussels and anti-Soros sallies. No more “peacock dance” for them. There is a clear choice of values between the European community, including the interests of a European Hungary and unrestricted populism combined with that vile robber mentality that measures everyone and everything only in euro cents. We shall see and watch what they choose. For us, a European Hungary comes first.

dr. István Ujhelyi
30 June, 2019

Áder Should Pay Back Public Money Sent to His Foundation


15431How does János Áder feel now? Is he not ashamed of Fidesz’ huckster policy? Are you not embarrassed, Mr. President? Your boss, Viktor Orbán and his government have just blocked the EU climate plan: more precisely that, by 2050, EU countries only emit as much carbon as they can compensate for. The leaders of the European Union are working to tackle the increasingly threatening climate emergency situation of global droughts, floods and extreme temperature fluctuations. But then Viktor Orbán comes with his illiberal buddies and puts a stick between the spokes. Because nothing matters to them. In a confusing way, they refer to defeating the “utility cost demon,” but in reality they are simply blackmailing the European community like thugs. Shame!
Fidesz’s disgusting attitude is shameful in many ways. On the one hand, the responsible member of the current government recently spoke of climate policy goals that were the same as those of the EU, yet they prevented the adoption of the relevant clause. However, János Áder must have been repeatedly disgusted in the recent past, as not so long ago, for example, MEPs from Fidesz rejected the EP resolution on curbing air pollution from the transport, agriculture and energy sectors.
This means that they did not support solving the increasingly worsening problem of air pollution, when at least ten thousand people die of diseases that are directly related to polluted air in Hungary. However, the voluntary knight of environmental sustainability, the public dignitary of green policy, President János Áder did not have a single word to say. Neither does János Áder have any sane comments to share with his fellow party members now, after the Fidesz climate coup.
I hereby call upon János Áder to clarify his position on the EU climate goals hindered by the orange government! If sustainability and climate protection really matter to him, then he should be brave enough to stand up to his party mates!
In the name of Hungarians who feel responsible for our environment and our future, I also warn him that if he continues to support the Orbán-government’s anti-environment policy as a silent accomplice, he should immediately close down his foundation for climate protection and immediately return the nearly one and a half billion forints of public money to the Treasury that he received from the tax revenues of Hungarian people to support his green policy! It is about time he started acting as a real Head of State and a responsible environmentalist as opposed to being a coward and a sneaky Orbán-puppet that he is.

dr. István Ujhelyi
23 June 23, 2019