UN State Liaison Functions sensitize prison officers and inmates on COVID-19 prevention measures in South Darfur
Zalingei-31 August; UNAMID’s Rule of Law Team in the UN State Liaison Functions (SLFs) and the Prison Directorate and Ministry of Health in South Darfur State, held a one-day sensitization Workshop on prevention and mitigation measures against the spread of COVID-19 at the Nyala Central Prison female wing premises.
Workshop attendees comprised key justice actors in South Darfur from the Prisons, Prosecutions, Judiciary and Legal Aid Administration Directorates, including forty-five Prisons Officers and over a hundred male and female inmates. The sensitization session for the latter category was held separately inside the prisons, as part of the support offered to justice institutions to enhance safety in the delivery of justice services and increase compliance with the World Health Organization and the Sudan Ministry of Health guidelines on prevention of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.
Basic Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE) and general home cleaning materials were also distributed to all Workshop participants as a way of raising awareness amongst personnel of these institutions and also enable the continuation of delivery of justice services during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Addressing participants, the Director of Prisons in South Darfur, Brigadier General Salah Eldin Ibrahim Abaker, lauded the partnership between UNAMID’s Rule of Law Section and State Prisons and Justice institutions and acknowledged the Mission’s continued support to the justice institutions that has facilitated massive improvement in the prison management, including the psycho- social support provided by Civil Society Organization (CSOs) to the inmates during these difficult times of dealing with the prevention and mitigation against COVID-19.
“Through the collective efforts of the inmates and officers and the drive to work together, we have managed to ensure a safe working space and healthy living conditions in the places of detention, which are currently over crowded thereby making them susceptible to infectious diseases, hence our advocacy for the urgent need to procure cleaning materials and PPE. We acknowledge that the prisons operational and living environment has improved due to the support extended to us by UNAMID, including increased capacity to manage prisons in a professional manner”, he explained.
In his remarks, the UN SLFs Rule of Law representative in South Darfur, Coster Kabulo Chiyota, strongly encouraged continued collaboration in justice support for increased capacity, health, peace and security in the State, as UNAMID prepares for its exit from Darfur at the end of December 2020.
Participants appealed to UNAMID and other relevant partners to organize similar sensitization workshops in other South Darfur locality prisons, judicial and prosecution offices, underlining need to construct a training center, college or school to accommodate the numerous training requirements in the State.