2012. október 11., csütörtök

The basic requirements for the maintenance and development of the national identity of the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina

Public summons to the Hungarian minority representatives, to the leaders of the mother country and to the Hungarian members of the European Parliament

The following facts could be stated concerning the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina:
-          the demographic and economic situation and the unemployment rate of the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina has been  deteriorating (even after the so-called democratic takeover in October 5, 2000) – the results of the October 2011 census concerning the nationality structure and distribution have not been published yet –, while the birth rate is decreasing, more and more young and educated people are moving abroad which consequently leads to the fact that the Hungarian minority population is growing old;
-          in Vojvodina the unemployment rate exceeded the so far unprecedented 27 percent, and the unemployment rate among the Hungarian minority people is even significantly higher;
-          fewer and fewer representatives of the Hungarian minority community are in charge of decision making in the significant decision-making organizations – (for instance, in Zrenjanin and Novi Sad) – which threatens their right for the proportional representation and equal opportunity in decision making –, the fact that more and more Hungarian contractors loose their real estates and arable land property increases the impoverishment of the community;
-          the Hungarian minority political parties were unsuccessful on the 2012 Serbian elections and also there is a lack of agreement among them concerning the most vital political and social questions referring to their community;

As a result of the above mentioned serious problems, the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina is increasingly ruled by despair, depression and lethargy. As we – the undersigned leaders of the Hungarian minority political parties, civil organizations and individuals – who took part on the September 27, 2012 meeting, feel responsible for not only our but our children’s future, we demand:

  1. Taking political actions against high unemployment rates – including investments that will create new and secure jobs – as well as provisions for creating better living conditions that would encourage the young members of the Hungarian minority community to stay in their birthplace to live, work and establish a family;
  2. From the Serbian government the full-scale national, territorial and personal autonomy of the Hungarian minority living in Vojvodina; based on our experience, there is a need for the modification of the Law on the National Councils to enable the real political self-governance of  the national minorities in Serbia; as a next step, new democratic national council elections should be hold, based on the register of voters made and kept by the Serbian government, while taking into account the territorial distribution of the population;
  3. Not only the final decentralization of Serbia but its division into regions – by taking into consideration economic, geographic, ethnic and other vital principles – on the pattern similar to the EU; the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina where creating majority should live in one administrative  district; as a part of the public administration reform, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity township municipalities should be established; the complete restitution of the self-governing system of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, including legislative, executive and judicial jurisdiction.
  4. The integration of the MP places for the representatives of national minorities – assured by the Constitution of Serbia – into the electoral law; the assurance of the proportional representation of minority Hungarians in the decision-making, administrative and judicial institutions on all levels; the enactment of a new law on the election process of the MPs, which makes voting for individuals and political lists equally possible and where every candidate receiving, at least, 2000 votes is entitled to be ranked;
  5. The modification of the assimilation encouragement regulation about the annexation of Ada, Senta and Kanjiza to the territory of northern Banat; 
  6. The restoration of the municipal courts in Ada, Čoka, Kanjiža, Bečej, Temerin, Bačka Topola and Senta and the publication of the data concerning the national distribution of the employees at administrative workplaces; the right for the use of the Hungarian language  during office routine in the administrative organizations and the enactment of a law on the official language and letter use;
  7. The establishment of:
-          a separate Hungarian education system – from kindergarten to university – based on the needs of the Hungarian minority population and taking into account the opinion of the representatives of the Hungarian minority parents;
-          Hungarian mother tongue groups and courses at the University of Novi Sad;
-          the independence of the primary shools in Torda and Novi Itabej presently belonging to the Serbian school centre;
-          a new syllabus for teaching the state language (Serbian) as a non-mother tongue for the Hungarian mother tongue students. Also there is a strong need for the modernization of the existing language teaching course books and an erasure of any content referring to the condemnation of the national minorities;
  1. The liberty of the press, being independent both of the political parties and the Hungarian National Council;
  2. Specification of a deadline for finishing the construction works of the National Theatre in Subotica and the Europe Student Hostel in Novi Sad;
  3. Abolishment of the collective guilt decree from the October 6, 2011 Law on Property Restitution and Compensation;
  4. From the Serbian Parliament to adopt a declaration against the 1944-45 massacre concerning Hungarians in Vojvodina, to officially apologize and to provide the opportunity for the worthy commemoration; allow the erection of monuments for the victims of World War II in every settlement with mass graves, the re-opening of secret files and archives to help research on the war events as well as to allow access to the list of informants and to institute proceedings against the perpetrators of the atrocities alive;
  5. Putting an end to the settling of deported people mainly from Western Europe into the territories inhabited by the Hungarian minority community, because it would not only change the ethnic proportion of the population but would also make the public security worse;
  6. From the government of Serbia to ensure the effective investigation of the ethnic-based incidents and to consistently apply the law – regardless of any affiliation –  against the perpetrators, as well as the release of the Temerin prisoners, to those, who got unproportionally high, prison punishment;
  7. Taking into account the above mentioned issues of the native Hungarian minority and discuss them in the phase of the negotiations on Serbia’s European integration; we consider the adequate settlement of the most crucial questions in the Serbian-Hungarian, Hungarian-Serbian relations before Serbia becomes a candidate member state;
  8. We – the undersigned leaders of the Hungarian minority political parties, civil organizations and individuals – are going to monitor and call the Hungarian members of the Parliament to account for holding the brief and the realization of the above mentioned demands.

The aforesaid public summons will be sent to the Serbian and overseas press in Serbia and abroad, to Ivica Dačić, the Prime Minister of Serbia, to Štefan Füle, Europen Comissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, to Jelko Kacin, Member of the European Parliament and rapporteur on Serbia's accession to the European Union, to the leaders of the mother country and to the Hungarian members of the European Parliament.

Novi Sad, September 27, 2012.

Political parties:
 András Ágoston, Hungarian Democratic Party – Vojvodina (Vajdasági Magyar Demokrata Párt, president
– Áron Csonka, Democratic Community of the Hungarians in Vojvodina (Vajdasági Magyarok Demokratikus Közössége), president
– Bálint László, Hungarian Hope Movement (Magyar Remény Mozgalom), president
– László Rácz Szabó, Hungarian Civil Association (Magyar Polgári Szövetség), president

Civil Organisations:
– ”Árgus” – Civil Assotiation for the Minority Rights of the Hungarians in Vojvodina (Vajdasági Magyar Kisebbségjogi Civil Egyesület), mgr. Antal Bozóki, president
– ”Barangoló” – Civil Organisation – Zenta (Barangoló Civil – Szervezet, Zenta), Éva Miklós, president
Horizont” The Union of the Hungarian Southern-Bacska and Srem Civil Organisations  (Horizont Dél-bácskai és Szerémségi Magyar Civil Szervezetek Szövetsége), Bátori József, president
– ”Nagy Sándor” – Assosiation of Monument and Tradition Protection, (Nagy Sándor Műemlékvédő és Hagyományápoló Egyesület, Ferenc Papp, president
„Nagyapáti Kukac Péter" –  Association of Hungarian Tradition Protection and Ethnography Research (Nagyapáti Kukac Péter Magyar Hagyományőrző és Néprajzkutató Társulat – Topolya, Kovács László elnök)
– Student Fund Association – Novi Sad (Újvidéki Diáksegélyező Egyesület), Márton Matuska, president
– Hungarian Reader Association (Újvidéki Magyar Olvasókör), Mária Matuska, president
– Novi Sad Civil Choir (Újvidéki Polgári Daloskör), Ferenc Papp, vice-president
– Association of Hungarian Pedagogues of Vojvodina, (Vajdasági Magyar Pedagógusok Egyesülete), Margit Nagy, president

István Bálint, journalist, Novi Sad 
Zoltán Margit, horticulturist, Csóka
Béla Muhi, professor, Újvidék 
Judit Rontó B
.,  mgr., teacher, Torda
Angéla Szabó, journalist, Csantavér
Sándor Zavarkó, mgr., Novi Sad
Karolina Magyari, lawjer, Novi Sad

Individuals who agree with the content of the above public summons may feel free to sign it on the following link:
http://www.peticiok.com/petition for the maintenance of the national identity of the Hungarian minority community in Vojvodina
Till oktober 11 th, 2012. this document was signed by 218 people.

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