Development partners urged to join hands in training inmates

By Taban Henry

Development partners on Thursday were urged to join hands in scaling up the program of training prison inmates in South Sudan by UNDP.

This was revealed to the media during the graduation ceremony of inmates in Wau Prison Vocational Training Center where over 100 inmates and prison staff were trained.

Speaking during the occasion, the United Nations Development Program’s resident representative Dr. Samuel Doe called upon developmental partners to come together to provide capacity building to the inmates to upgrade the infrastructure of the existing centers to ensure that trainings and skills development remain relevant in this fast-evolving world.

He said young people should not be given life sentences which are of neglect and doom since they serve time in prison for breaking the law.

“It befits us all to ensure that young people walk out of the prison gates transformed and empowered to live positively, engaging and contributing to the development of their families, communities and the society at large. This will prevent recidivism and promote a secure nation with a robust and sustainable economy through inclusive development,” he said.

Dr. Doe added that rehabilitation programs significantly contribute to the national efforts to ensure safety, security and peace by addressing the surge in the youth delinquency and involvement in community violence.

He further said that he feels proud to see that some inmates released into the community after successful completion of the course at the center and have been well reintegrated with informal employment in the private sector.

“I would like to implore my colleagues from the UN and development community, local NGOs and the public sector present to give priority to the skilled graduates joining the community after completion of the incarceration period. It is our collective responsibility to support the ex-inmates, cushion them from the risk of reoffending due to the harsh economic situation, societal discrimination and stigma,” he added.

The UNDP residence representative urged the prison service to explore ways on expanding the production scheme for revenue generation, to ensure sustainability and provide wages for the inmates working in the unit, as provided by the prison law.

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