9 Transitional Justice cases submitted to Ombudsperson’s Office within a week

The newly appointed chief ombudsperson Abdul Salaam Arif | photo: Sun

Malé, Maldives – The Ombudsperson’s Office has received 9 cases of Transitional Justice within a week of its announcement to start accepting cases.

Media official from the authority informed that they received 9 cases of Transitional Justice. However, he has not yet revealed any details of the specific cases.

Chief Ombudsperson Abdul Salam Arif said replying to a question from local media Avas, that the authority will decide how to continue on a certain case within 15 days of its submission. He also said that the authority will accept older cases as well, however, the required documents verifying the case must be submitted to the office.

The office is now open for the public to present any issue that goes against basic human rights and freedom regarding a government institution, a superior member of the government institution or even an employee before July 13, 2021.

If any individual wishes to report a complaint or receive compensation, then they are advised to fill the forms available at Transitional Justice website or at the Office and submit the relevant forms either to the counter or to email it to complaints@otj.gov.mv.

The Office is to complete cases lodged within 2 years of the date of filing. Protocols are set in place for public hearings for Transitional Justice cases, with priority given to older cases and cases with crimes against humanity. The plaintiff may also request a public hearing.

The Office of Ombudsperson was established following the ratification of the Transitional Justice Act (Act No: 28/2020). The establishment of the Office of Ombudsperson for Transitional Justice is mandated under section 4A of this Act. The Act sanctions investigations into past wrongdoings by state authorities, heads of agencies, or individuals in power, which resulted in human rights violations.

The Transitional Justice Act strengthens accountability mechanisms, provides a framework for redress and reparations for victims of the abuse of power, and outlines measures to avoid such abuses of authority in the future. The eligibility timeframe for cases that may be investigated according to this Act runs from 1st January 1953 to 17th November 2018.