The minimum international standards for prisons focus of joint Government of Sudan-UNAMID seminar
KHARTOUM – Sensitizing senior Sudanese prison and police officials about the minimum UN Standards of Operation involved in managing prisons, also known as The Mandela Rule, was the aim of a recent workshop held in Khartoum.
The two-day meeting -- organized jointly by the Government of Sudan’s Directorate of Prisons and Reform, and UNAMID -- took place on 22-23rd February.
Major-General Abu Obeida Suleiman, Director-General of Prisons and Reform (Centres) in Sudan joined senior Sudanese prison and police personnel, along with officials from UNAMID’s Rule of Law section.
Participants deliberated on policy documents that serve as guidelines for the Sudanese prison system, with a focus on inspection, standard operating procedures and training.
Major-General Suleiman said Sudan has made significant strides in complying with international minimum operation standards throughout its prisons, with no major violations of human rights recorded in a long time.
“Had it not been for the scarcity of resources which handicap training, Sudan would have been streets ahead of (international) counterparts,” said Major-General Suleiman.
Mary Okumu, a Senior Corrections Advisor with UNAMID said, “The fight against crime would be ineffective unless prisons are safer, secure and geared towards rehabilitation rather than repression.”
As such, observing the UN minimum standards was indispensable, said Ms. Okumu.
A follow up seminar, to validate and adopt the documents discussed, is planned for El Fasher in March.