Appointed rapporteur on Ombudsman report, Marlene Mizzi stresses transparency

MEP Marlene Mizzi has stressed on the need for the European Ombudsman to be transperent, as she is appointed as rapporteur for the Petitions Committee's report on the annual activities of the European Ombudsman

MEP Marlene Mizzi
MEP Marlene Mizzi

MEP Marlene Mizzi has been appointed as the rapporteur for the Petitions Committee's report on the annual activities of the European Ombudsman, with Mizzi stressing the need for the Ombudsman to be transparent and accessible.

The European Ombudsman is an independent and impartial body that holds the EU administration to account by investigating citizens’ complaints about deficiencies and cases of maladministration of the European institutions, bodies, offices and agencies.

In its 2016 annual report, the European Ombudsman reiterated the importance of transparency of EU institutions, conflicts of interest of EU public officials, citizens' participation in the EU decision-making process and fundamental rights as the ultimate concerns of the citizens.

In what is her second official appointment as the S&D spokesperson on the Ombudsman’s activities, Mizzi welcomed this year’s report during an exchange of views with the Ombudsman. She supported the Ombudsman initiative of connecting the work of the EU institutions and bodies, trust of the EU citizens and the current challenges facing the EU, such as the unemployment crisis, the migration crisis and Britain's exit from the EU.

“I think we no longer can ignore the fact that everything is interlinked and when citizens are unhappy with the work of the EU institutions - because of administrative burden, red tape, excessive or untransparent procedures - there should be mechanisms to improve the current system,” Mizzi said, adding that she believed that one such mechanism was the service of the European Ombudsman. 

“We need to stress the important role of the Ombudsman in these challenging times for the EU institutions. The services of the Ombudsman must be seen to be open, transparent, rapid and flexible so that more citizens can have positive experience from dealing with European institutions,” Mizzi said.

She said that the Ombudsman's most important function was to improve visibility and communication with Europe’s citizens, in order for them to be aware of and utilise their rights in the most efficient way.