(Thessherald)–The United Nations in South Sudan has announced new measures in support of Government-led efforts to prevent and prepare for the coronavirus (COVID-19). These are aimed at protecting the people of South Sudan and UN staff.
Currently, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in South Sudan and UN operations are continuing largely as normal across the country, providing protection, humanitarian assistance and supporting development.
However, as a protection measure, the Government recently announced restrictions on travelers entering South Sudan from a list of countries affected by local transmission of COVID-19 along with other public health measures. These steps are similar to those adopted by many other countries around the world.
The United Nations respects and will follow decisions made by the Government of South Sudan to protect the population from COVID-19.
As a result, staff currently on leave in affected countries listed by the Government are being advised not to return except for those personnel deemed essential to UN operations. In these cases, staff will be required to self-isolate for 14 days.
The UN in South Sudan has also decided to suspend the travel of staff on Rest and Recuperation leave until 15 April when the situation will be reviewed.
Activities that would have required hosting large gatherings of people are also being postponed in line with the Government’s public health advice.
The United Nations’ priority is to protect the people of South Sudan and its staff who are here to serve. At the same time, we have an important job to do and we cannot falter in carrying out our duties. People’s lives depend on it.
For that reason, the UN will make every effort to continue its activities to protect civilians, build peace, provide humanitarian assistance and support development. We will also continue to support national-led COVID-19 prevention and preparedness efforts.