Mozambique: Office of the Ombudsman

Updated August 2009

The Office of the Ombudsman is established by Article 256 of the Constitution; however, this office is not operational. In law, the ombudsman is protected from political interference. Art 256 (2) states that reports of the agency be publicly available. A bill to effectuate these provisions was introduced in Parliament in 2006 but has not yet been adopted.

According to the 2006 Global Integrity Country Report political interference of oversight agencies by the Executive is commonplace. Agencies can initiate investigations, but often investigations are intended to justify the actions of the government. When penalties are imposed, it is rather to get rid of an unwanted government official more than to punish an offender. Government is good at coming up with justifications to dismiss an oversight agency and there is little protection of oversight agencies from political encroachment. For the most part, there is little professionalism when appointing staff for an oversight agency. Ties and relationships are more important, as government officials seek individuals who would support their actions. Reports are made for convenience and to fulfil the requirements of the regulations but they are not meaningful for the public to learn anything substantial. Unless a citizen has a strong support in government, the agency will drag its feet in dealing with a complaint, perhaps until the citizen gives up (Global Integrity 2006).

References

CONSTITUTION OF MOZAMBIQUE 1990, [www] http://www.kituochakatiba.co.ug/mozamcon.htm [opens new window] (accessed 22 Feb 2010). For Portuguese see: Constituição da República de Moçambique (incluindo as revisões de 1994 e 2004), [www] http://www.mozambique.mz/pdf/constituicao.pdf [PDF document, opens new window] (accessed 22 Feb 2010).

GLOBAL INTEGRITY 2006 'Mozambique Scorecard Report', IN Global integrity Report 2006, [www] http://www.globalintegrity.org/reports/2006/Mozambique/index.cfm [opens new window] (accessed 9 Mar 2010).