UKZN Ombudsman Manager Awarded an International Scholarship
Manager of the UKZN Office of the Ombudsman, Advocate Busisiwe Mngoma, was recently awarded a scholarship by the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) to attend both the IOA Foundation’s training for organisational ombudsmen and the 10th IOA Annual Conference in Georgia in the United States.
Mngoma said she was very pleased to have received the Scholarship and attributed the success of the Ombud’s office partly to professional support and development she has received from the IOA since she joined as a member in 2012.
‘The IOA training gave me an opportunity to sharpen my Ombud skills, deepen my knowledge, especially in areas of dealing with leadership and visitors, as well as generating reports. Working with Leadership and rethinking the IOA Standards of Practice was one of the important discussions which focused on the complexities, challenges and accomplishment Ombuds face in respective organisations,’ she said.
The IOA is an organisation founded in 2005 after the merger of the University and College Ombuds Association (UCOA), and The Ombudsman Association (TOA) for the purpose of supporting Organisational Ombuds.
Professor Mary Rowe, a veteran Ombud at MIT Sloan who retired at the end of September 2014 after being an Ombud for 41 years, was honored for her immense contribution at the IOA.
Mngoma, who has been the Manager of the Office of the Ombud since December 2010, says she found out about the IOA while researching the value of establishing an organisational Ombud’s office.
The UKZN Ombud’s office operates according to IOA Standards of Practice and a Code of Ethics for Organisational Ombudspersons. Both are founded on the principal that Ombudspersons must be confidential, neutral (or impartial), informal, and independent.
The Ombudsman profession is developing in South Africa and much of the practice depends on literature research and experience in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).
The conference provides delegates with an opportunity to exchange ideas and practical experience with seasoned colleagues and Ombuds practitioners from other Universities around the world.