Mandates of the Office of the Ombudsman


ENVIRONMENT

The mandate on environment is also linked to the issues around the rights to sustainable development.
The Ombudsman must receive complains on the over-utilization of living natural resources and provide remedies thereon. The living natural resources are the fishing industry, wildlife, etc. The irrational exploitation of the non-renewable resources is likewise a duty for the Ombudsman to investigate upon receiving a complaint. This would include a matter like the exploitation of the Namibian mineral resources. The Ombudsman must further ensure that ecosystems are not destroyed and that the beauty and character of Namibia is maintained. Examples of this mandate can be found in issues like the Epupa dam where the right to development had to be balanced against other rights like the right to a culture. The issue around the San people in Namibia is also a good example where the Ombudsman’s role is to protect their culture, protect the environment they are living in from land degradation and to ensure that the ecosystems in those areas are maintained, through establishment and proper management of conservancies.