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* To improve the performance of public administration
* To improve government accountability to the public
* To improve citizens’ access to the administration
Some essential characteristics of an Ombudsperson include:
* Independence from the government: an ombudsperson should stand above party politics, be totally impartial and fair and be able to criticise and make recommendations [See also the Paris Principles]
* Broad powers to investigate: ombudsperson must be free to look into any issue that falls within their mandate without prior approval from the authorities.
* Offices must be adequately resourced, free from government financial control and able to handle complaints free of charge.