Ombudsman Secretariat expanding outreach for swift disposal of public complaints: Aijaz

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Federal Ombudsman Ejaz Ahmed Qureshi, Thursday, said that the outreach of the Federal Ombudsman’s Secretariat is being extended to far flung areas to ensure access of masses to an effective complaint resolution mechanism across the country.

He expressed these views wile presiding over a meeting held here at Federal Ombudsman Secretariat (FOS) Regional Office Karachi to review performance of the office, implementation status of public complaints and other relevant matters. The meeting was attended by Secretary FOS Aijaz Ahmed, Senior Adviser and in charge Karachi office Syed Anwar Hyder n other advisers and officers.

The Federal Ombudsman said that new offices of the Secretariat have been opened in Quetta, Kharan, Khuzdar and Swat to receive public complaints against 200 federal departments and agencies for swift resolution of complaints and issues being faced by general public. The Federal Ombudsman offices in far flung areas were receiving encouraging response from the masses of those areas as a significant number of complaints were filed through such offices, he added.

Aijaz Qureshi said that FOS was vigorously working to provide remedy to aggrieved people within 60 days of the filing of complaints and thousands of people mostly belonging to lower income groups had got their issues resolved in minimum possible time and without bearing any financial burden.

Underscoring the importance of implementation on FOS’s decisions, he said that the Implementation Wing of the Secretariat was strengthened, follow up meeting were held with officials of concerned departments and agencies and daily reports were sought from subordinate offices to ensure dispensation of justice to the aggrieved.

A monitoring committee has also been set up to review progress on cases pertaining to issue of pay and pension of Pakistan Railways and other federal government organizations, he informed.

Holding Khuli Katchehries (open public meetings) to listen to public grievances, proactive role of advisers, visits and inspections of different public entities, adoption of informal complaint resolution modes and arbitration were some other initiates taken to provide relief to masses, he said adding that such steps resulted into increased confidence of public on state organisations.

The Federal Ombudsman also urged advisers and officials to work with honesty, sense of service of humanity and dedication to resolve the issues of common men.

Senior Adviser and in charge regional office Karachi, Syed Anwar Hyder briefed the meeting that Regional Office received 5016 complaints against K-Electric, Sui Southern Gas Company, NADRA, Employees Old age Benefit Institution, Benazir Income Support Program, IB, FIA and other federal government organizations in the year 2022 from January 1 to date and 510 were under process from the previous year while 5461 public complaints has been disposed off so far.

He further informed that 752 cases had been closed so far in the current year after confirmation from the complainants while there were 1729 cases pending for implementation in the regional office.

He informed that the Advisers paid visits and carried out inspections of K-Electric, Pakistan Railways, Utility Stores and other federal departments and agencies.

KE and SSGC had included information about Federal Ombudsman and its role in consumer bills which is proving beneficial for consumers; he informed and suggested fixing of Panaflex and standees in offices of all relevant department and organization for imparting awareness to public.

Later, the Federal Ombudsman held a meeting with employees of the Regional Office, inquired about their problems and administrative issues they were facing and issued directives in the regard.

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