News News from Hungary Hungary’s First Female Head of State Elected

Hungary’s First Female Head of State Elected

The new Pres­i­dent of Hun­gary has been elect­ed by a two-thirds major­i­ty in the Hun­gar­i­an Par­lia­ment. For­mer Fidesz vice pres­i­dent and Fam­i­ly Min­is­ter, Katal­in Novák, received the major­i­ty of votes at today’s par­lia­men­tary ses­sion. The rul­ing par­ties vot­ed in her favor, while most of the oppo­si­tion rep­re­sen­ta­tives vot­ed against her. The pres­i­den­tial elec­tion was to be held in two rounds, but a sec­ond bal­lot was not required. Although Pres­i­dent János Áder’s man­date will not expire until May 9, the rul­ing par­ties were able to ensure that some­one from their ranks will hold the high­est polit­i­cal office before the par­lia­men­tary elec­tions. In her intro­duc­to­ry speech, Katal­in Novák called the Russ­ian inva­sion “a destruc­tive virus” and promised to work for the uni­ty of the nation.

This arti­cle was orig­i­nal­ly pub­lished on our sis­ter-site, Ungarn Heute. 

The Nation­al Assem­bly decid­ed today on Pres­i­dent János Áder’s suc­ces­sor. The rul­ing Fidesz-KDNP nom­i­nat­ed the party’s for­mer vice pres­i­dent, and the government’s for­mer Fam­i­ly Min­is­ter, Katal­in Novák, while the oppo­si­tion par­ties’ can­di­date was econ­o­mist Péter Róna.

Mem­bers of par­lia­ment elect­ed Katal­in Novák as the new Pres­i­dent of Hun­gary in a secret bal­lot,  with a two-thirds major­i­ty in the first round. The can­di­date of Fidesz-KDNP received 137 votes, while her oppo­nent, oppo­si­tion can­di­date Péter Róna, obtained 51 votes.

The elec­tion of the new pres­i­dent of the repub­lic began at 9:30 a.m. with 15 minute speech­es by each candidate.

Today the coun­try elects a new head of state through you, the demo­c­ra­t­i­cal­ly elect­ed rep­re­sen­ta­tives in the parliament,”

Katal­in Novák said at the begin­ning of her speech, while still a can­di­date for the pres­i­den­tial office. She called the war launched by Rus­sia “inde­fen­si­ble and inex­plic­a­ble,” and stressed that this had stirred every­thing up, call­ing the attack a “destruc­tive virus” at a time when “we were just begin­ning to recov­er from the epidemic.”

Pho­to by Zoltán Máthé/MTI

“There has been a war going on in our neigh­bor­ing coun­try for 14 days. I vis­it­ed Tran­scarpathia last week with four bish­ops and expressed how Hun­gar­i­ans liv­ing there are as impor­tant as Hun­gar­i­ans in the moth­er­land and refugees from Ukraine,” Novák continued.

Hun­gar­i­ans want peace and women want to win peace not war, because in peace we can build, pros­per, and smile at each other.”

Novák also spoke about her first life­long alliance, name­ly the alliance with her hus­band when she said yes to him at their wedding.

Hav­ing chil­dren was one of the most impor­tant deci­sions of our lives,”

Novák con­tin­ued and said that although her hus­band will be the first “First­gentle­man,” he will remain who he is right now: ” István Veres.”

She also thanked Prime Min­is­ter Vik­tor Orbán for allow­ing her to be “part of the nation-build­ing process.” Katal­in Novák said that who­ev­er is elect­ed Pres­i­dent has the task to show the tru­ly beau­ti­ful face of the coun­try in the next five years through his/her life, work, appear­ance, and deeds.

I am ready for this task, I am all pre­pared. I have to rep­re­sent all Hun­gar­i­ans. I will remain who I am.”

She promised to use the tal­ents giv­en to her for those who need peace and under­stand­ing. “To do this, I will not take the cross from my neck, but I will press it to my heart.” She also promised to vis­it towns and vil­lages or the Gyp­sy set­tle­ments, as well as Hun­gar­i­ans liv­ing across the bor­der. One of her first vis­its will be to Warsaw.

Press Roundup: PM Orbán Nominates Katalin Novák as His Candidate for President

Pun­dits across the polit­i­cal spec­trum com­ment on Prime Min­is­ter Orbán’s deci­sion to name State Sec­re­tary for Fam­i­ly and Youth Affairs and Fidesz vice-pres­i­dent Katal­in Novák as the Fidesz can­di­date for President.

“I belong to a gen­er­a­tion that is ready for inde­pen­dence, and we will not allow Russ­ian roulette to be played with the coun­try. We have already expe­ri­enced what it is like to live under Russ­ian occu­pa­tion, but we don’t want to be messed with by the West either,” she added.

Hun­gary will nev­er be Switzer­land, and for us Lake Bal­a­ton is the Riv­iera, Kékes is the peak, Hun­gar­i­an is our secret lan­guage, Bartók and Kodá­ly are our brands in music, our neigh­bors are giv­en. We belong to Europe, and Europe belongs to us and we can­not and do not want to change it,”

said Katal­in Novák.

She also spoke about the fact that it was her task to lead the coun­try to the heights of under­stand­ing, peace, and security.

Most Influential Hungarian Women: Fidesz Dominates Top 10

Three oppo­si­tion politi­cians made it into the top 10 on Forbes’ list con­cern­ing the most influ­en­tal women in Hun­gar­i­an pub­lic life.

She asked: Who is Katal­in Novák? and answered:

“She comes from the south­ern Hun­gar­i­an city of Szeged, and with­out the lega­cy of her grand­par­ents, she would not be who she is right now. As she said, she learned from her moth­er and father what they had received from their par­ents, name­ly val­ues such as hon­or, integri­ty, and the abil­i­ty to stand on both feet. They strength­ened those skills with a lot of knowledge.”

We can always go on and start again, we can build, we can strength­en what is ours. As long as we have free will, we can­not be sub­ju­gat­ed. The cra­dle of sov­er­eign­ty is the fam­i­ly. I will nev­er give that up.”

“It is pri­mar­i­ly their task to show togeth­er­ness, but not alone,” she said.

Novák also spoke about the upcom­ing par­lia­men­tary elec­tions and empha­sized that April 3rd is a deci­sive moment for every­one, for all Hun­gar­i­ans. As Pres­i­dent, she will stand on the foun­da­tions of Hungary’s con­sti­tu­tion, the Fun­da­men­tal Law. She will not work to elim­i­nate the exist­ing legal order, but to pre­serve it, Novák con­clud­ed her speech.

Opposition: President-Nominee Novák Can Only Create the Unity of Fidesz, Not the Nation

Sev­er­al oppo­si­tion politi­cians have strong­ly crit­i­cized Katal­in Novák’s nom­i­na­tion as Hungary’s next pres­i­dent, say­ing the for­mer Fidesz vice-pres­i­dent is unfit to express and strength­en the uni­ty of the nation.

Katal­in Novák is Hungary’s first female head of state. The oppo­si­tion can­di­date was Péter Róna. We will report on his speech in a sep­a­rate article.

Fea­tured pho­to by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI

Source: hun​gary​to​day​.hu