Claire Szabó, New Zealand Labour Party’s newly elected leader is also a Hungarian citizen

A truly surprising story from New Zealand. The ruling Labour Party has elected Claire Szabó as its new president. New Zealand-born Szabó is also a Hungarian citizen, her father served as Hungary’s Honorary Consul in the past.

The 41-year-old politician has an unusual life story. Her father arrived to New Zealand as a refugee after the 1956 Hungarian Revolution when that country accepted 1,100 Hungarian refugees. She grew up in Papakura, an Auckland suburb and describes herself a Hungarian-Kiwi.

Claire Szabó with her father Miklós Szabó in Budapest.

After receiving a degree in music in Auckland she moved to Hungary to teach English. Next stop was Dublin’s Trinity College where she received a degree in education management and continued working as a language teacher. After returning to New Zealand she joined English Language Partners a community-based, not-profit organization that offers English courses to migrants and refugees from non-English speaking backgrounds. She frequently talks about her father’s refugee experience.

In the last couple of years she was the chief executive of Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit organization which builds shelters for people with low incomes.

Claire Szabó the new leader of New Zealand Labour Party.

Previous party leader Jacinda Ardern currently serves as Prime Minister of New Zealand. The Labour Party is a center-left social democratic party and part of the Progressive Alliance where Hungary is represented by the Hungarian Socialist Party (MSZP).

György Lázár

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *