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  • Political Ombudsman, Donna Parchment-Brown, has reiterated her commitment to fostering a healthy political climate that allows everyone to feel comfortable in exercising their democratic rights.
  • She was speaking on a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Issues and Answers programme with host Ian Boyne.
  • Mrs. Parchment-Brown, who was sworn in on November 16, is expected to function as mediator and facilitator to ensure the proper conduct of the political parties in accordance with the established codes.

Political Ombudsman, Donna Parchment-Brown, has reiterated her commitment to fostering a healthy political climate that allows everyone to feel comfortable in exercising their democratic rights.

She was speaking on a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Issues and Answers programme with host Ian Boyne.

Mrs. Parchment-Brown, who was sworn in on November 16, is expected to function as mediator and facilitator to ensure the proper conduct of the political parties in accordance with the established codes.

She said her  mission as Political Ombudsman is to ensure “that every citizen and everyone in the country feels confident that they can have a political point of view, express that political point of view, and move about the country not being in any way restricted, intimidated or harmed as a result of their real or perceived political position.”

She noted that under the Political Ombudsman (Interim) Act, the Political Ombudsman shall investigate any action taken by a political party, its members or supporters “where he/she is of the opinion that such action constitutes or is likely to constitute a breach of any agreement, code or arrangement…between or among political parties in Jamaica , or prejudice good relations between the supporters of various political parties.”

Mrs. Parchment-Brown stressed that civility in political discourse is crucial as it “requires a certain amount of respect.”

The attorney-at-law and former head of the Dispute Resolution Foundation said her experience in the field of dispute resolution has prepared her for the position as Political Ombudsman.

Mrs. Parchment-Brown, who is also a founding member of the Peace Management Initiative, said she has worked with her predecessor, Hon. Bishop Herro Blair, whom she hailed as a “mentor”.

The Political Ombudsman is “appointed by the Governor-General after consultation with the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition.

To make a submission, complaint or a suggestion to the Political Ombudsman, persons can contact the Office of the Political Ombudsman at 85A Duke Street, Kingston, or by writing to politicalombudsman@yahoo.com.