President of Hungary

Last updated
President of the
Republic of Hungary
Magyarország köztársasági elnöke
Flag of the President of Hungary.svg
Ader Janos.jpg
János Áder

since 10 May 2012
Residence Sándor Palace
Budapest, Hungary
Appointer National Assembly
Term length Five years, renewable once
Inaugural holder Mátyás Szűrös
Formation23 October 1989
WebsiteThe Office of the President of the Republic: (in Hungarian; at October 2012, home page offered link to English module)
Coat of Arms of Hungary.svg
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The President of the Republic of Hungary (Hungarian : Magyarország köztársasági elnöke, államelnök, or államfő) is the head of state of Hungary. The office has a largely ceremonial (figurehead) role, but may also veto legislation or send legislation to the Constitutional Court for review. Most other executive powers, such as selecting Government ministers and leading legislative initiatives, are vested in the office of the Prime Minister instead.

Hungarian language language spoken in and around Hungary

Hungarian is a Uralic language of the Ugric branch spoken in Hungary and parts of several neighbouring countries. It is the official language of Hungary and one of the 24 official languages of the European Union. Outside Hungary it is also spoken by communities of Hungarians in the countries that today make up Slovakia, western Ukraine (Subcarpathia), central and western Romania (Transylvania), northern Serbia (Vojvodina), northern Croatia and northern Slovenia.

A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system, such as India, the head of state usually has mostly ceremonial powers, with a separate head of government. However in some parliamentary systems, like South Africa, there is an executive president that is both head of state and head of government. Likewise, in some parliamentary systems the head of state is not the head of government, but still has significant powers, for example Morocco. In contrast, a semi-presidential system, such as France, has both heads of state and government as the de facto leaders of the nation. Meanwhile, in presidential systems such as the United States, the head of state is also the head of government.

Hungary Country in Central Europe

Hungary is a country in Central Europe. Spanning 93,030 square kilometres (35,920 sq mi) in the Carpathian Basin, it borders Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Austria to the northwest, Romania to the east, Serbia to the south, Croatia to the southwest, and Slovenia to the west. With about 10 million inhabitants, Hungary is a medium-sized member state of the European Union. The official language is Hungarian, which is the most widely spoken Uralic language in the world, and among the few non-Indo-European languages to be widely spoken in Europe. Hungary's capital and largest city is Budapest; other major urban areas include Debrecen, Szeged, Miskolc, Pécs and Győr.


The current President of the Republic is János Áder, who took office on 10 May 2012.

János Áder President of Hungary

János Áder is a Hungarian politician and lawyer who has been the President of Hungary since 10 May 2012. Previously he served as Speaker of the National Assembly of Hungary from 1998 to 2002 and deputy chairman of the European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety from January to May 2012.

Presidential election

The Constitution of Hungary provides that the National Assembly (Országgyűlés) elects the President of the Republic for a term of five years, renewable only once.

The Fundamental Law of Hungary, the country's constitution, was adopted by Parliament on 18 April 2011, promulgated by the President a week later and entered into force on 1 January 2012. It is Hungary's first constitution adopted within a democratic framework and following free elections.

National Assembly (Hungary) parliament of Hungary

The National Assembly is the parliament of Hungary. The unicameral body consists of 199 members elected to 4-year terms. Election of members is based on a complex system involving both area and list election; parties must win at least 5% of the popular vote in order to enter the list of members of the assembly. The Assembly includes 25 standing committees to debate and report on introduced bills and to supervise the activities of the ministers. The Constitutional Court of Hungary has the right to challenge legislation on the grounds of constitutionality. The assembly has met in the Hungarian Parliament Building in Budapest since 1902.

Independence of the function

According to Article 12 (2) of the Constitution, the President, when exercising their function, can not exercise "a public, political, economic or social function or mission". They may not engage in "any other paid professional activity, and may not receive remuneration for any other activity, other than activities subject to copyright".

Condition for the candidature

According to Article 10 (2), any Hungarian citizen aged at least 35 years may be elected president.

Hungarian nationality law

Hungarian nationality law is based on the principles of jus sanguinis. Hungarian citizenship can be acquired by descent from a Hungarian parent, or by naturalisation. A person born in Hungary to foreign parents does not generally acquire Hungarian citizenship. A Hungarian citizen is also a citizen of the European Union.

Electoral process

Called by the President of the National Assembly, the presidential election must be held between 30 and 60 days before the end of the term of the incumbent president, or within 30 days if the office is vacated. [1]

The Constitution states that candidatures must be "proposed in writing by at least one fifth of the members of the National Assembly". [2] They shall be submitted to the President of the National Assembly before the vote. A member of the National Assembly may nominate only one candidate. [2]

The secret ballot must be completed within 2 consecutive days at the most. In the first round, if one of the candidates obtains more than 2/3 of the votes of all the members of the National Assembly, the candidate is elected. [3]

If no candidate obtains the required majority, the second round is organized between the two candidates who obtained the most votes in the first round. The candidate obtaining the majority of the votes cast in the second round shall be elected president. If the second round is unsuccessful, a new election must be held after new candidatures are submitted. [4]

Oath of office

According to Article 11 (6), the President of the Republic must take an oath before the National Assembly.

The oath is as follows:

Én, [name of the person] fogadom, hogy Magyarországhoz és annak Alaptörvényéhez hű leszek, jogszabályait megtartom és másokkal is megtartatom; [name of the function] tisztségemet a magyar nemzet javára gyakorolom. [And, according to the conviction of the one who takes the oath] Isten engem úgy segéljen!

I [name of the person], swear to be faithful to Hungary and its Constitution, to respect and enforce its legal rules by others; I shall exercise my function as the [name of the function] for the good of the Hungarian nation. [And, according to the conviction of the one who takes the oath] May God help me!

Competencies and prerogatives

According to the Constitution, "the Head of State of Hungary is the President of the Republic who expresses the unity of the nation and oversees the democratic functioning of State institutions". Commander-in-Chief of the Hungarian Defence Force, he "represents Hungary", "may participate in the sittings of the National Assembly and take the floor", "initiate laws" or a national referendum. It determines the date of elections, participates in "decisions concerning particular states of law" (state of war, emergency, emergency...), convokes the National Assembly after the elections, can dissolve it, check the conformity of a law by the Constitutional Court.

It "proposes the names of the Prime Minister, the President of the Curia, the Principal Public Prosecutor and the Commissioner of Fundamental Rights", the sole nominator of judges and the President of the Budget Council. With the "countersignature of a member of the government", he appoints the ministers, the president of the National Bank, the heads of independent regulatory entities, university professors, generals, mandate ambassadors and university rectors", "awards decorations, rewards and titles". But it can refuse these appointments "if the statutory conditions are not fulfilled or if it concludes for a well-founded reason that there would be a serious disturbance to the democratic functioning of the State institutions".

Also with the agreement of the government, it "exercises the right of individual pardon", "decides matters of organization of territory" and "cases concerning the acquisition and deprivation of citizenship".

Immunity and removal from office

According to Article 12 of the Constitution, "the President of the Republic is inviolable". Consequently, all criminal proceedings against them can only take place after the end of their mandate. [5]

However, Article 13 (2) of the Constitution provides for the removal of the President. This can only take place if the President "intentionally violates the Constitution or another law in the performance of their duties, or if they commit an offense voluntarily". In such a case, the motion for removal should be proposed by at least 1/5 of the members of the National Assembly.

The indictment procedure is initiated by a decision taken by secret ballot by a majority of 2/3 of the members of the National Assembly. [6] Subsequently, in proceedings before the Constitutional Court, it is determined whether the President should be relieved of their duties. [7]

If the Court establishes the responsibility of the President, the President shall be removed from office. [8]


Termination of mandate and incapacity

According to Article 12 (3), the term of office of the President of the Republic ends:

According to Article 12 (4), the National Assembly must decide by a majority of 2/3 of all its members to decide the incapacity of the President of the Republic to exercise their responsibilities for more than 90 days.

Absence (temporary incapacity)

According to Article 14 (1), if the President of the Republic is temporarily incapable of exercising their functions and powers, these are exercised by the President of the National Assembly (who can not delegate them to their deputies and who is replaced in their duties by the Vice President of the National Assembly [9] until the end of the President's incapacity.

According to Article 14 (2), the temporary incapacity of the President of the Republic is established by the National Assembly on the proposal of the President himself, the Government or a member of the National Assembly.


Role in the legislation

The role of the President of the Republic in the legislative process [10]
PresidentSelf-proposed lawsPolitical vetoesConstitutional vetoesAll
Árpád Göncz
Árpád Göncz
Ferenc Mádl
László Sólyom
Pál Schmitt
János Áder
János Áder

Living former presidents

There are three living former Hungarian presidents:

Latest election

CandidatePartySupporting parties1st round2nd round
Votes% of
all MPs
% of
voting MPs
Votes% of
all MPs
% of
voting MPs
János Áder Fidesz FideszKDNP 13165.874.913165.877.1
László Majtényi Independent MSZPLMPDKEgyüttPMMLP 4422.125.13919.622.9
Total votes17587.917085.4
Did not vote2412.12914.6
Total seats199100199100

See also

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  1. Article 11 (1) of the Constitution
  2. 1 2 Article 11 (2) of the Constitution
  3. Article 11 (3) of the Constitution
  4. Article 11 (4) of the Constitution
  5. Article 13 (1) of the Constitution
  6. Article 13 (3) of the Constitution
  7. Article 13 (4) of the Constitution
  8. Article 13 (6) of the Constitution
  9. Article 14 (3) of the Constitution
  10. "A köztársasági elnök szerepe a törvényalkotásban". Országgyűlés.