Provincial Ombudsman of Sindh, Pakistan, visits the Austrian Ombudsman Board
On 14 August 2014, the Provincial Ombudsman of Sindh, Mr. Asad Ashraf Malik, met with the Secretary General of the IOI and member of the Austrian Ombudsman Board, Dr. Günther Kräuter, at the IOI’s headquarter office in Vienna, Austria.
During the meeting the two Ombudsmen had the chance to engage in talks on the current situation facing Ombudsman institutions both, in Pakistan and in Austria.
While Secretary General Dr. Kräuter informed the Provincial Ombudsman of Sindh about the role of the Ombudsman Board in Austria, Mr. Malik provided an in-depth assessment of the tasks and challenges his institution is currently facing. According to Mr. Malik’s introduction, the Provincial Ombudsman of Sindh’s currently puts a special emphasis on the protection of women’s and children’s rights in Pakistan. Honour killings as well as child labour continue to pose a serious threat to the Pakistani society. Women and children that are the main targets of these crimes would therefore need special protection.
In addition, the Ombudsman is continuously targeting the severe punishment of children in schools by their teachers and is thus continuing to take actions against these grievances.
For the sake of providing quick and inexpensive justice to the people of Sindh, the Provincial Ombudsman established several regional offices within recent years. These - by now sixteen - offices further contribute to a facilitated access to justice in Pakistan.
Dr. Kräuter informed Mr. Malik about the current research project focusing on Ombudsman institutions in the Asian region and the development of future training formats.