Dr Otiende Amollo, Secretary General of the African Ombudsman association
There are no hopes soon that the offices of the Ombudsman in the east Africa region would be harmonized to streamline their activities as the call for harmonization of regional bodies continues to gain momentum.
Dr Otiende Amollo, Secretary General of the African Ombudsman association says that due to a diversity of opinions across member states harmonization of these offices is next to impossible.
“I doubt that we will have harmonization of offices as such,” he said while addressing press during his one day visit in Kigali on Friday in Kigali.
Otiendo who is also the Ombudsman of Kenya says the formation as well as mandates designated to the office is diverse within the member states which makes difficult to bring under one roof the said regional offices.
“Across East Africa, all of these countries are bound by regional and common ties but different historical perspectives in terms of the law, so because of this it is difficult to insist that each country must have a standard system,” he added
Accordingly, the Ombudsman mandate, Anti-corruption, mandate and human rights mandate are designated differently in the region some countries have them under one offices while others have two or have all as stand-alone.
Despite these differences experts say that the region would correlate the activities wi6tnin the mandates should correlate, something that is in the process of its full implementation by member states.
The member states under the integration agreed to harmonise some of the bodies in order to strength a common market and bodies such as Revenue Authorities, standards boards among others have already harmonized
The Ombudsman noted that his visit was aimed at sharing Rwanda’s experience in the implementation of the access to information law as well as jurisdiction to review judicial decisions that appear to result in injustice.