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Diamandouros re-elected as European Ombudsman

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Press release no. 02/2010

20 January 2010

The European Parliament (EP) has re-elected P. Nikiforos Diamandouros as European Ombudsman, with 340 votes out of a total of 648 valid votes cast. Mr Diamandouros commented: "I am very grateful for the support of the European Parliament and for this vote of confidence in my work. I look forward to continuing my efforts to improve the quality of the EU administration and to promote a culture of service in the EU institutions for the benefit of European citizens."

The Ombudsman's priorities for the next five years are to:

  • Ensure that citizens profit fully from the Treaty of Lisbon and the Charter of Fundamental Rights

The Ombudsman is determined to help citizens make full use of their rights, as provided for under the Treaty of Lisbon and the Charter of Fundamental Rights. This goal concerns specifically the right to good administration, the right of access to EU documents, the right to engage in dialogue with the EU institutions and the right to turn to the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman will work with the EP and with national and regional ombudsmen in the Member States to inform citizens about their rights.

  • Strengthen a "culture of service" to citizens within the EU administration

With the help of the Ombudsman, the EU administration should strengthen its "culture of service" to citizens. This includes a commitment to (a) greater transparency and to good administration; and (b) informing citizens of their right to have their affairs handled impartially, fairly and within a reasonable time by the EU administration.

  • Further improve the efficiency of the Ombudsman's office

The Ombudsman is determined to continue to improve his services by achieving results more quickly in his investigations and by rigorously self-assessing the institution's handling of citizens' complaints. He also wants to enhance his public visibility through targeted information campaigns. The Ombudsman moreover intends further to intensify cooperation with other information and problem-solving mechanisms, such as Europe Direct, SOLVIT and the European Network of Ombudsmen.

The European Ombudsman is elected by the EP for five years. P. Nikiforos Diamandouros has served as European Ombudsman since 1 April 2003. Before becoming European Ombudsman, he was, from 1998 to 2003, the first National Ombudsman of Greece.

More information about the Ombudsman election is available at:

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/electionombudsman

The Ombudsman investigates complaints about maladministration in the EU institutions, agencies and bodies. Any EU citizen, resident, or an enterprise or association in the EU, can lodge a complaint with the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman's powers include the right to inspect EU documents, call officials to testify, and to open strategic inquiries on her own initiative. For more information: www.ombudsman.europa.eu

For press inquiries: Ms Gundi Gadesmann, Head of Communication, tel.: +32 2 284 26 09, Twitter: @EUombudsman