News : Article

Timor Leste: New PDHJ members take office

Graphic: Dr Silverio Baptista (left), Jesuina Gomes (centre) and Dr Horacio de Almeida (right)

Two Deputy-Provedors of the Timor Leste’s national human rights institution were sworn in by President of the National Parliament, Vicente Guterres.


Two Deputy-Provedors of the Timor Leste's national human rights institution were sworn in by President of the National Parliament, Vicente Guterres, on 14 January 2015.

Ms. Jesuina Maria Ferreira Gomes has been appointed Deputy Provedor for Good Governance and Dr Horacio de Almeida will serve as the Deputy Provedor for Human Rights.

Ms Gomes and Dr Almeida will join Dr Silverio Baptista, who was sworn in as Provedor for Human Rights and Justice in October 2014, having worked in the organisation over the past ten years.

Dr. Baptista said his vision for the PDHJ includes structural changes and a greater focus on education and promotion of human rights and good governance as "human rights work is not only about remedying violations but also about changing people's attitudes".

Strong collaboration with civil society and State entities, as well as information sharing, is vital, he said.

"Systematic and solid coordination, collaboration and information sharing is integral to achieving the PDHJ's objectives to improve human rights for everybody."

Dr. Baptista said he intends to work with and learn from as many stakeholders as possible throughout the period of his mandate.

Ms Gomes brings extensive experience in public administration to her new role, which includes serving as Commissioner of the Civil Service Commission.

She says a key goal is to "maintain good coordination and communication with other institutions" so that human rights and good governance are respected in State policies.

Having worked with various UN Missions to Timor Leste, Dr Almeida stressed the importance of PDHJ's promotional work and building cooperation with government institutions, NGOs and other civil society groups.

"Strengthening our monitoring, promotion and investigation activities will allow us to increase the recommendations and concrete interventions we make with the authorities. I hope that this in turn will translate into better governance and human rights compliance," said Dr Almeida.

The biographies of Provedor Silverio Baptista and Deputy Provedors Jesuina Gomes and Dr Horacio de Almeida are available on the APF website.

Date: 15 February 2015

Source: Provedoria for Human Rights and Justice of Timor-Leste


Image credits

  1. Dr Silverio Baptista (left), Jesuina Gomes (centre) and Dr Horacio de Almeida (right) - Timor Leste Office of the Provedor for Human Rights and Justice