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25 June, 2024
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Hungarian government insider alleges corruption cover-up

Peter Magyar's revelations shakes Orban's government, deepens the political crisis, and prompts calls for accountability


Former Hungarian government insider turned oppositionist Peter Magyar released an audio recording on Tuesday, alleging top officials conspired to cover up corruption, adding a new layer to a scandal that has rocked Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's political stronghold.

The scandal initially surfaced in early February with revelations of a pardon issued by President Katalin Novák to a man involved in concealing child sexual abuse at a state-run orphanage. This led to mass protests, forcing close Orbán allies, including Novák and Justice Minister Judit Varga, to resign amid public outcry.

Magyar, Varga's ex-husband and a former political insider, claims to have turned whistleblower, revealing further details of the scandal. He published an audio recording on social media featuring Varga's voice allegedly discussing the removal of evidence from court records to conceal corrupt activities by government officials.

Varga countered Magyar's claims, accusing him of domestic violence and asserting she made the statements under duress. Magyar, however, denied these allegations, emphasizing his commitment to exposing corruption.

Once a relatively obscure figure in Orbán's circle, Magyar gained prominence after accusing the government of corruption and smear campaigns in a widely-viewed YouTube interview. He has since announced plans to establish a new political party to challenge Fidesz's long-standing rule.

The scandal has plunged Orbán's government into an unprecedented crisis, with Magyar's revelations exacerbating political challenges already facing the administration. Critics see Orbán's leadership as fostering a nepotistic system of oligarchs, with Magyar targeting close allies like Antal Rogan, who purportedly led efforts to alter evidence.

Varga resigned from her post as Justice Minister in February amidst the scandal involving Novák's pardon. The ongoing revelations continue to undermine Orbán's authority and pose significant challenges to his government's credibility amid a mounting economic crisis.

Source: AP

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