Mozambique 2004 Constitution (reviewed 2007)

Table of Contents



Article 249. Fundamental Principles

  1. The Public Administration shall serve the public interests and, in the discharge of its functions, shall respect the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens.
  2. The offices and agents of the Public Administration shall owe obedience to the Constitution and the law, and shall act with respect for the principles of equality, of impartiality, of ethics and of justice.

Article 250. Structure

  1. The Public Administration shall be structured on the basis of the principle of decentralisation and de-concentration, thereby encouraging the modernisation and efficiency of its services, without prejudice to unified action and the directive powers of Government.
  2. The Public Administration shall promote the simplification of administrative procedures, and shall make public services more accessible to citizens.

Article 251. Access and Statute of Officers

  1. Access to public office shall not be obstructed on grounds of colour, race, sex, religion, ethnic or social origin, or party-political preference, and shall adhere strictly to the criteria of the merit and ability of applicants.
  2. The law shall regulate the statute of officers and other agents of the State, as well as the incompatibilities and the guarantees of impartiality in the exercise of public offices.

Article 252. Hierarchy

  1. In the exercise of their functions, officers and other agents of the State shall owe obedience to their hierarchical superiors in terms of the law.
  2. The duty of obedience shall cease whenever to discharge it would involve the commission of a crime.

Article 253. Rights and Guarantees of Citizens

  1. Citizens shall have the right to receive information from the competent Public Administration services, whenever they request it, on the progress of processes in which they have a direct interest, in terms of the law.
  2. Interested parties shall be notified of administrative acts within the terms and the time limits established by law, and reasons for these acts shall be given whenever they affect the rights or interests of legally entitled citizens.
  3. Interested citizens shall be guaranteed the right to judicial appeal against the illegality of administrative acts that endanger their rights.


Article 254. Definition

  1. The function of the Police, in collaboration with other State institutions, shall be to guarantee law and order, to safeguard the security of persons and property, to keep public peace and to ensure respect for the democratic rule of law and the strict observance of the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens.
  2. The Police shall not adhere to any particular party.
  3. In the exercise of its functions, the Police shall owe obedience to the law and shall serve citizens and public and private institutions with impartiality and independence.

Article 255. Command and Organisation

  1. The Police of the Republic of Mozambique shall be headed by a Commander-General.
  2. The law shall establish the general organisation of the Police and shall determine its branches, its functions, its structure and the rules regarding admission into the Police.


Article 256. Definition

The Ombudsman is an office established to guarantee the rights of citizens and to uphold legality and justice in the actions of the Public Administration.

Article 257. Election

The Ombudsman shall be elected by a two-thirds majority of the deputies of the Assembly of the Republic, for a term which shall be determined by law.

Article 258. Independence

  1. The Ombudsman shall be independent and impartial in the exercise of his functions and he shall owe obedience only to the Constitution and the laws.
  2. The Ombudsman shall provide report annually on his activity to the Assembly of the Republic.

Article 259. Powers

  1. The Ombudsman shall investigate the cases submitted to him. He shall not have power to make decisions about the cases, but shall submit recommendations to the appropriate offices to correct or prevent illegalities or injustices.
  2. If the investigations of the Ombudsman lead to the conclusion that the Public Administration has committed serious mistakes, irregularities or violations, he shall inform the Assembly of the Republic, the Attorney General of the Republic and the central or local authority, with recommendations for pertinent measures.

Article 260. Duty to Collaborate

The offices and agents of the Public Administration shall be under a duty to collaborate with the Ombudsman in the exercise of his functions, should he so request.

Article 261. Statute, Procedures and Organisation

The law shall determine all other aspects pertaining to the statute, the procedures, and the organisational structure supporting the Ombudsman.


Article 262. Definition

The function of local State bodies shall be to represent the State at local level, in the administration and development of their respective territories, and they shall contribute to national integration and unity.

Article 263. Organisational Principles

  1. The organisation and operation of local State bodies shall adhere to the principles of decentralisation and de-concentration, without prejudice to unified action and the directive powers of Government.
  2. In their operation, local State bodies shall promote the use of available resources, ensure the active participation of citizens and encourage local initiative in solving problems of their communities.
  3. In their actions, local State bodies shall respect the attributes, powers and autonomy of local authorities.
  4. So that it may exercise its particular powers, the State shall ensure that it is represented in the territorial constituency of every local authority.
  5. The law shall establish institutional mechanisms for liaison with local communities, and it may delegate to local communities certain functions that are within the powers of the State.

Article 264. Functions

  1. Local State bodies shall, within their respective territories, and without prejudice to the autonomy of local authorities, ensure that economic, cultural and social programmes and tasks of local and national interest are implemented, in accordance with the Constitution and with the decisions of the Assembly of the Republic, the Council of Ministers, and higher ranking State offices.
  2. The organisation, functioning and powers of the local State bodies shall be regulated by law.
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