BUDAPEST: New protests were taking place in Budapest on Friday night as Hungarians continue to oppose Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s controversial ‘slave law’.
The amended law was approved Hungarian MPs on December 12 and has now been rubber-stamped by President Janos Ader.
On Friday night, protesters headed to the Buda Castle, Ader’s presidential palace. In previous protests, they had demonstrated at the Hungarian parliament and the state TV building.
The ‘slave law’ will allow employers to ask staff to work up to 400 extra hours per year of overtime, compared with the current limit of 250.
An “ironic peace march” started in Budapest at 18h CET as a cynical show of ‘gratitude’ for what the Hungarian government did for workers. Protesters have already said that they will be back to demonstrate in January.
In an interview with Hungarian state radio, PM Orban defended the law, which he described as “good” for those who “want to earn more”. He added that the law is opposed by people “whose lies have no limits”.
He explained that the point of the law was to “abolish unnecessary regulations so that those who want to earn more are able to”.
Earlier this week, protesters rallied around, and even inside, the Hungarian parliament in Budapest.
More than two-thirds of the Hungarian population support the protests and consider the law to be against the worker’s best interests, a poll by the Publicus institute has found.__EuroNews