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Ombudsman: Rejection of activity reports violates constitutional and legal provisions

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The Ombudsman maintains that the rejection by Parliament of the activity reports for the years 2018 - 2020 violates the constitutional and legal provisions.

In a release sent on Tuesday to AGERPRES the Ombudsman invokes the provisions of the Constitution and the Law on the organization of the institution, mentioning that, according to them, the Ombudsman is a public autonomous authority, independent from any other public authority, under the law. Also, the quoted source states, the Ombudsman cannot be subject to any imperative or representative mandate and cannot be obliged by anyone to obey their instructions or dispositions, and in the exercise of his attributions, the Ombudsman does not substitute himself for public authorities.

"The Ombudsman is accountable only to Parliament, a responsibility that materializes through the obligation to submit annual or special reports. Through these, the Ombudsman has the opportunity to highlight serious shortcomings and dysfunctions in the administration and to make recommendations on amending legislation, another nature for the protection of the rights and freedoms of persons," shows the release.

According to the mentioned source, on May 25, the Ombudsman participated in the joint meeting of the Legal Committees of the two Chambers of Parliament, during which the activity reports for 2018, 2019 and 2020 were debated and rejected "despite the fact that neither the Constitution nor does Law No 35/1997 provide for such a procedure."

The Ombudsman mentions that the only express provision is the one regarding the presentation of the report in the joint sitting of the two Chambers of Parliament, but that "according to parliamentary procedures, debate does not mean voting on the report, debate and voting being distinct stages of parliamentary procedure."

The Ombudsman considers that the role of the reports is to constitute the means by which the Parliament takes note of the activity of the public administration and of the identified legislative gaps, so that it can order measures to improve the activity of the public administration authorities and the legislation.

The Senate and the Chamber of Deputies convene on Tuesday, in a joint session, among the items on the agenda being the report of the Ombudsman, the National Audiovisual Council (CNA) and the Supreme Council of National Defence (CSAT).

On May 25, the Legal Committees of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate rejected the report on the activity of the Ombudsman for 2020.

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