Zsolt Borkai, head of the Fidesz party’s organisation in Gyor, who was narrowly reelected on Sunday as the western Hungarian city’s mayor, has announced that he is quitting the ruling party.
Borkai said he would continue as an independent in cooperation with the Fidesz-Christian Democrat (KDNP) group and “Gyor’s citizens”. The mayor, who has been linked to a sex scandal, said he had decided to leave the party to avoid causing Fidesz “a moral disadvantage”. He added that he was staying on as the city’s mayor to honour Gyor citizens’ trust in him shown at the ballot box.
Borkai “won the country an (Olympic) gold in 1988, and now he has won gold medals to candidates of the left-liberal parties in three to five Budapest districts and at least two cities of county status,” Gergely Gulyas, the Prime Minister Office’s chief, said at a conference. He said surprise defeats were caused by the mistaken assumption that far-right and far-left voters would not vote for the joint opposition platform, as well as the reaction of voters to Borkai’s scandal. The third cause, he said, was that by now two blocs have emerged in Hungarian politics.
The opposition Democratic Coalition (DK) called for Borkai to resign from the mayoralty immediately. At a press conference, DK spokesman Balazs Barkoczi said the mayor’s “corruption and sex scandal seems to have been left without any real consequences”. He is quitting Fidesz of his own accord instead of being expelled, he noted.
DK has filed a report with the Croatian police, where video footage of Borkai apparently participating in a sex act is said to have been made, so that the matter will be investigated “since the Fidesz-affiliated [Hungarian] prosecution service and authorities remain idle,” Barkoczi said.
Opposition Parbeszed called on Borkai to resign his post immediately. Timea Szabo, co-leader of the party, said it was “not nearly enough” that Borkai quit his Fidesz membership and insisted that he had become unworthy of his post. If Fidesz “lets the Borkai case pass” it will demonstrate its support for “politicians having orgies on luxury yachts”, Szabo said. Parbeszed has proposed that the new municipal assembly of Gyor declares Borkai unworthy of the mayoral position and call a new election.
Source and photo: MTI