Ombudsman recommends banning television competitions that use telephone numbers at extra cost

The Ombudsman, Maria Lúcia Amaral, addressed a set of recommendations to the Secretary of State for Consumer Protection, with a view to protecting the rights of consumers, particularly the most vulnerable, in the context of television competitions which call for more expensive telephone calls. 

In accordance with Article 38 of his Statute, the Ombudsman’s recommendations are addressed to the body competent to correct the illegal or unfair act or the irregular situation of its services, and the addressee of the recommendation must communicate his position on it within 60 days. 
 
The Ombudsman may act on his own initiative, but as a rule he receives and analyses citizens’ complaints. However, the Ombudsman has no binding decision-making powers. His power lies in the good reasoning of the positions he takes and in his ability to mediate. He can address any calls, suggestions or recommendations to the competent bodies that he deems necessary to prevent and redress injustices. It may also request the Constitutional Court to review the constitutionality or legality of the rules.
 
To read the recommendation click here [in Portuguese only].