The Citizen or Civic Participation Office (OPC), who was selected for it, and treatment of persons who are selected for it and refuse to participate, 1998-2000 [PER34360.E]

The information that follows was provided during a 1 June 2000 telephone interview by staff responsible for public information and visitors at the Office of Institutional and Citizen Initiatives (Oficina de Iniciativas Ciudadanas e Institucionales, OICI) of the Congress of Peru.

The legal operational framework of the Peruvian Congress defines the existence of OICI under its current name. However, after its operations began expanding and gaining visibility, approximately in 1996 and 1997, OICI became known as the Office of Citizen Orientation and Participation (Oficina de Orientación y Participación Ciudadana, OPC). It operated under that name until 1999 when, under the congressional presidency of Marta Hildebrant, it was noted that the name of this congressional office was legally defined as Office of Institutional and Citizen Initiatives, so instead of modifying the legal framework the organization reverted to the name originally defined in the laws and regulations of Congress.

OICI has been since its inception a non-partisan office of Congress responsible for facilitating access to the Peruvian Congress to Peruvians everywhere. The two main areas of activity of OICI are participation and orientation. Its mandate and activities have remained largely unchanged over the years, but the latter have expanded; the most recent additions to its activities are long-distance courses (cursos a distancia) and long-distance inquiries and requests service (consultas a distancia).

The information that follows was found in Spanish on the Internet Website of OICI, at

OICI has 11 persons on its staff: one assistant (auxiliar), one secretary, four "technical" staff and four "parliamentary specialists" (OICI 11 October 1999)

Through OICI, persons can learn about the history, operations and members of Congress, request information, submit opinions on proposed laws, and participate in discussions. OICI also provides an electronic mail (e-mail) subscription service to publications produced by other branches of Congress, including the weekly Congressional Agenda, Síntesis Informativa, Gaceta del Congreso, Ultimas Noticias, and invitations to public events (ibid. 23 May 2000).

OICI handles a variety of inquiries and requests from citizens and organizations addressed to the Congress, including legislative suggestions, petitions, complaints, memos and letters, through e-mail, fax and telephone (ibid.).

To orient citizens about the history, constitution and operations of Congress, OICI provides a Website with information and links, carries out guided tours, organizes congressional meetings outside the capital, participates in a radio program called Punto de Encuentro...con el Congreso ("Meeting Place...with the Congress"), participates in trade shows and fairs, and produces and distributes information products such as flyers, guide books and other publications (ibid.).

References to the OICI staff selection process or to a particular treatment of persons who are selected and refuse to participate in it could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


Oficina de Iniciativas Ciudadanas e Institucionales (OICI), Lima. 1 June 2000. Telephone interview with staff.

OICI: Oficina de Iniciativas Ciudadanas e Institucionales [Lima]. 9 August 1999-23 May 2000. [Accessed 31 May 2000]
Additional Sources Consulted

Andean Newsletter [Lima]. 1998-Feb. 2000.

IRB Databases.

Latinamerica Press [Lima]. 1998-Apr. 2000.

Latinamerican Regional Reports: Andean Group Report [London]. 1998-Apr. 2000.


World News Connection (WNC).

Internet websites and search engines.


This list is not exhaustive. Country-specific books available in the Resource Centre are not included.