RMDSZ nominates six secretaries of state

At its Tuesday meeting, the governing body of the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania (known by its Hungarian acronym of RMDSZ) has nominated state secretaries to six ministries in the cabinet led by Prime Minister Florin Cîţu.

“In the first round of nominations, the Federal Permanent Council of RMDSZ proposes the following as secretaries of state: Zoltán Kallós at the Ministry of Education; András István Demeter at the Ministry of Culture; Csongor Oltean at the Ministry of Youth and Sports; Róbert Szép at the Ministry of the Environment, Waters and Forests; Csilla Hegedüs at the Ministry of European Funds; and Péter Makkai at the Ministry of Labor and Welfare,” informed the RMDSZ press office on Tuesday.

According to the communiqué, the leading council of the RMDSZ will decide on the nomination of more secretaries of state in the days to come. Romanian media has recently reported that RMDSZ will have a total of 12 secretaries of state and two deputy secretaries of state in the government; thus, RMDSZ can count on positions for secretaries of state in the Ministries of Agriculture, Transport, Energy, Public Health, Development and Finance as well.

RMDSZ has three ministers and one deputy prime minister in the three-party government of Florin Cîţu. The Ministry of Development, Public Works and Administration is led by Attila-Zoltán Cseke; the head of the Ministry of Environment, Waters and Forests is Barna Tánczos, and the Minister for Youth and Sports is Eduárd Novák. Party president Hunor Kelemen is one of the two deputy prime ministers in the cabinet. The Cîţu cabinet was sworn in on December 23 last year, following parliament’s approval.

According to the biographies of the nominees for the secretary of state positions published by RMDSZ, Zoltán Kallós (41) is a geography teacher who has also been running a primary school for more than a decade.

András István Demeter (51) studied acting, cultural management and law. He was manager of the Gergely Csiky Theater of Temesvár (Timişoara) for 12 years. From 2005 to 2010, he was director at the Ministry of Culture and then state secretary at the same ministry. From 2010 to 2012, he was the president-CEO of the Romanian Radio Broadcasting Company.

Csongor Oltean (32) has an economics degree and has been the president of the Hungarian Youth Conference (known by its Hungarian acronym MIÉRT), which is the largest youth organization in the Carpathian Basin, with a total of 382 member organizations. Since 2018, Oltean has also been executive vice president of RMDSZ, responsible for youth.

Róbert Szép (42) holds a degree in Geology and held the office of deputy secretary in the National Environmental Guard from 2014 to 2019. Since 2018, he has been a lead researcher at the National Institute for Research and Development in Environmental Protection.

Csilla Hegedüs (53) has a degree in Economics and is currently the executive vice president responsible for culture and also spokesperson for RMDSZ. She has previously served as Secretary of State in the Ministry of Culture and then for a short time as Minister for Culture. She has been a member of the Brussels-based European Heritage Jury since 2012 and a researcher at the European Strategy Research Institute Budapest (ESKI) since March 2020. She is also president of the Transylvania Trust Foundation and, as such, has been coordinating the restoration of the renowned Bánffy Castle in Bonchida since 2001.

Péter Makkai (49) is a Reformed priest and also a manager at the Diakónia Christian Foundation of Sepsiszentgyörgy; He is responsible for the organization’s branch that helps the disabled and works in child welfare and family support.

Title image: Csilla Hegedüs, executive vice president responsible for culture and spokesperson for RMDSZ.

Author: Éva Zay