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A New Chapter of Cooperation: Control Yuan and Nicaragua Human Rights Ombudsman Office Sign Bilateral Agreement

  • PostDate:2013-04-12

Nicaragua Human Rights Public Defender Mr. Omar Cabezas, in the company of his wife, attended Control Yuan plenary meeting on the morning of April 9, 2013. In addition to signing with the Control Yuan President Wang Chien-Shien a Bilateral Agreement between the ROC and Nicaragua for Institutional and Technical Cooperation, Mr. Cabezas also gave a speech highlighting the importance of ombudsman power. The event marked a new beginning for further collaboration between the two sides.
In his opening remarks, President Wang acknowledged Mr. Cabezas’ cordiality and support for Control Yuan’s participation in international conferences, especially the meeting of Ibero-American Federation of Ombudsman (FIO). His continuous effort in promoting Control Yuan’s presence in the world is greatly appreciated. President Wang welcomed the signing of the Agreement with Nicaragua, following Argentina, Panama and Paraguay, all of which not only affirm the works at the Control Yuan but also advance exchanges between the signatories in terms of information, technologies, experiences, conferences and workshops.
President Wang also presented Mr. Cabezas with the First Grade Control Yuan Medal to applaud his contribution in government supervision and human rights protection, as well as his support for the Control Yuan. Mr. Cabezas responded with a speech on his experience and lessons learned from his both roles as a human rights defender and an ombudsman supervising the Nicaraguan government.
Mr. Cabezas talked about his childhood witnessing the persecution on his family and the country by the authoritarian regime, which led up to his decision to embark on a revolution against authoritarian rule. After serving as a member of parliament, Mr. Cabezas was elected, based on a two-thirds majority rule, to serve as Human Rights Public Defender. He noted that the job is a new battle for him, and he feels fulfilled in serving as an ombudsman in that the supervision power was gained by their struggle. In his opinion, an ombudsman institution is strategic and crucial in a nation’s political composition. Mr. Cabezas encouraged all Control Yuan Members to join in on the fight for equality and justice to build a better society and live up to the duties of ombudspersons in the twenty-first century.
The idea of signing the Agreement took shape in August 2012, after the staff exchange program between the Control Yuan and its Latin American counterparts. The Nicaraguan participant returned home and began boosting for further collaboration between the two sides. In October, the two offices signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Nicaragua Human Rights Ombudsman Office by Dr. Louis Chao, the Control Yuan Member and the chairperson of international affairs committee, and Mr. Cabezas, paving the way for the official signing in the Control Yuan this week.
Also present at the ceremony were Nicaraguan Ambassador Mr. William Tapia and Director General Mr. Wu Chin-Mu of the Dept of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.