Caputova: Ombudsman’s Office Is Important for Democracy

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Ombudswoman Maria Patakyova and President Zuzana Caputova (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, March 21 (TASR) – The ombudsman’s office is important for democracy and ombudswoman Maria Patakyova has been performing her work independently, highly professionally and with dedication, said President Zuzana Caputova when awarding a thank-you medal to the ombudswoman for her merits in the observance and protection of fundamental human rights and freedoms.

“I view help in the case of violation of fundamental rights in areas that are often overlooked, downplayed or confronted with political power as a defining characteristic of how the ombudsman’s office should work,” stated the head of the state. This is also a confirmation of independence and the fact that the office is an actual protective shield for all people, without exceptions, she said.

The reverse side of the office is the misunderstanding, ignorance and personal attacks from politicians, said Caputova. “You have experienced them to the fullest, and I appreciate that you have not backtracked from your principles,” she said.

Patakyova considers it important that the president noticed her efforts to make the ombudsman’s office independent and to translate it into practice and political reality.

Current ombudswoman Maria Patakyova’s term in office will expire on March 29. Patakyova already announced that she will not run for the post again. An ombudsman is elected by parliament for the period of five years.