DSC02906Hungary’s government commits fraud when it tries to disburse European Union funding on the basis of political affiliation, Socialist MEP István Ujhelyi, the party’s deputy leader, said in Brussels. Ujhelyi said he was drawing conclusions from a reply the EU’s anti-fraud office (OLAF) had given the Socialist Party (MSZP).

He said that by last autumn it had been suspected that OLAF’s answer would make clear that the Hungarian government should not disburse EU funding to localities based on their leadership’s party affiliation. Further, “government politicians should not blackmail Hungarian voters,” he said. “It cannot be said, as the state secretaries, the speaker of parliament and several other leading Fidesz politicians had said, that only those municipalities would get a good deal from EU development funds over the next few years that have an orange [Fidesz] mayor,” Ujhelyi added.

He quoted OLAF’s reply, saying that the “situation outlined in your letter raises the suspicion that in the current situation the disbursement of EU funds does not completely abide by the effective European regulations and that the principle of transparency is not fully respected.” The Socialist politician called on the government to put EU funding towards worthwhile projects based on the professional considerations while treating every municipality on a level playing field. – 01.21.2015

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