State owned power plant’s contracts are not public, Supreme Court verdict says

Western-Hungary power plant’s company Vértesi Erőmű Zrt. got into a bankruptcy situation in 2008 after signing suspicious contracts with System Consulting Zrt, owned by billionaire businessman and former socialist MP László Kapolyi. The Oroszlány based Vértesi Erőmű is an affiliated company of the state-owned MVM Magyar Villamos Művek Zrt., Hungary’s dominant electricity trader. Tamás Bodoky, editor-in-chief of Átlátszó.hu requested the documents of the damage-causing contracts back in 2009, but József Magyari, CEO of Vértesi Erőmű Zrt refused to publish them. Bodoky took legal actions and he won at first-degree court but lost of the second appeal court. After turning to Supreme Court in this freedom of information case he had to face disappointing results again. Curia’s (legal successor of Supreme Court from 1st January 2012) last week verdict strengthened the opinion that Vértesi Erőmű is not responsible for public services even if the company works on MVM’s assignments. Lawyer Tivadar Hüttl, representative of Hungarian Civil Liberties Union stated that delegating public services to affiliated companies is a serious threat on monitoring public funds’ spending. As we do not accept Curia’s verdict we appeal to the Constitutional Court of Hungary.