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December 6, 2021

Gov’t OKs Hungarian-language faculty at Targu Mures

Opposition will attack the decision in court.

UDMR has won the first battle within the ruling coalition after the Education Ministry published yesterday a draft government decision that stipulates the setting up of a Hungarian and English-language faculty within the University of Medicine and Pharmacy (UMF) in Targu Mures. The decision discussed during yesterday’s government meeting stipulates the creation of a Hungarian-language (350 seats) and English-language (50 seats) faculty within UMF. “The purpose of the new draft law is part of our preoccupations on developing the statute of multicultural and multilingual universities, in view of making the national education system compatible with the European system of education and professional training,” the government decision reads.The decision was adopted after Prime Minister Ungureanu and UDMR leaders agreed on Monday evening to launch it for public debate for 10 days. UDMR President Kelemen Hunor returned to the government on Monday evening in order to make sure the draft decision will be included on the agenda of Tuesday’s government meeting, in the form agreed immediately after the ruling coalition’s meeting. The decision was adopted after UDMR MPs boycotted the Lower Chamber and Senate meetings. However yesterday, UDMR MPs returned to the Parliament, Vice-premier Marko Bela saying that they would attend Parliament meetings as long as the draft is in public debate. The Democrat-Liberal Party did not appreciate the pressure it was subjected to in Parliament. PDL President Emil Boc stated on Monday evening on B1TV that UDMR’s gesture of boycotting the Parliament’s works was profoundly incorrect, that PDL does not accept ruling through blackmail and will not accept a Hungarian-language-only faculty in Targu Mures as UDMR wants. Boc pointed out that PDL’s mandate is to support UMF’s multicultural character and to observe the education law, pointing out that “multiculturalism is the red thread.”PM Ungureanu stated the same thing, explaining that the government applied a technical solution “that would respect the education law, the principle of university autonomy and multiculturalism.” He added that he talked with the leader of students in Targu Mures too, assuring him that this is not about ethnic segregation. Ungureanu pointed out that he wanted the German language included alongside Hungarian and English languages within UMF, but that currently there are some “obstacles” in implementing this measure.

Opposition attacks government decision in court

After threatening to file a no-confidence vote if the government adopts the decision concerning UMF the day before yesterday, yesterday the opposition pointed out that it will most likely attack the decision in court after it is published in the Official Gazette. Mircea Dusa, leader of the PSD group within the Lower Chamber, pointed out that this is the simplest and safest solution. “If the government forces a solution on this issue through a government decision we will attack it in court the moment it is published in the Official Gazette and we will ask the court to stop the decision from having any effects until a final ruling,” Dusa stated, adding nevertheless that the no-confidence vote is still being considered in case the government tries to modify the education law that it adopted by taking responsibility for it in Parliament. In his opinion, the government decision represents UDMR’s “whim.” “Even though UDMR is in pre-elections campaign, because they organize pre-elections although some other parties representing Hungarians in Romania have appeared, that doesn’t mean PDL should cede so much to UDMR,” Dusa stated, being quoted by Mediafax. Attacking the decision in court is a move on the liking of UMF’s leadership too, the UMF Rector explaining that “any newly-established form of education has to have ARACIS authorization and acceptance.” “It can be attacked in court if the law is disregarded,” Constantin Copotiu stated. The national education law stipulates that the government can set up a faculty on condition it concerns “domains of national interest.” 300 students protested on Monday in Targu Mures against the Hungarian-language faculty. In retort, UDMR leader Kelemen Hunor said yesterday that politics cannot be done in the street. He added Hungarian students also wanted to ask for their rights in the street but he had asked them to not put their intention into practice. In his turn, Marko Bela said the students who protested had been instigated to do it, also accusing UMF leadership that allowed the students to take their protests to the street.

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