National, News

Insecurity hinders service delivery

By Charles K Mark


Doctors without Borders cites insecurity as a major factor hindering service delivery in the country.

MSF Country Director Mamman Mustapha remarked this during an occasion to mark the 40th anniversary of the medical charity agency’s service in South Sudan.

Mustapha said that on several occasions the operations of the agency had to be closed or suspended due to insecurity and lack of guarantees for staff safety.

MSF country Director noted incidences of looting, bombings, attacks on facilities, ambushes, robberies, abductions and death of many colleagues as challenges facing the mission.

“In recent years, vehicles were ambushed, burned to ashes, and staff held at gunpoint while providing medical care,” Mamman revealed.

He specifically referred to incidences in Yei, saying the agency’s workers were providing mobile clinics.

According to Doctors without Borders, during a conflict on the Nile corridor and in Upper Nile between July 2022 and February 2023, no humanitarian corridor was guaranteed by the warring parties.

“In 2023, a man opened fire in an MSF facility in Fangak, leaving one caretaker wounded, in a revenge killing attempt,” the Agency said in a statement.

The medical agency states that it also faces challenges in attempting to recruit national staff.

“A significant challenge continues to exist to get lab technicians, specialized nurses and clinicians, physiotherapists, and psychologists” the Agency noted.

Vice President of the Agency’s Eastern Africa Association, Anthony Ayuel, said that they and other partners have provided some programs, but long-term initiatives are needed to address the gap.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Ramadan Mohamed Abdulla Goc, acknowledged the Agency’s 40 years of service delivery in the region.

He noted the presence of so many armed groups in the country that operate without vision or goals.

“Most of these armed groups operate on the grounds of fear. Some of them may think that without conflict, they may lose their jobs, so they want the conflict to continue so that war will also continue,” Minister Goc said.

He applauded the medical agency for maintaining its ground on impartiality and independence during service delivery.

Meanwhile, the National Minister of Health, Yolanda Awel Deng, said that the need for services remains high, despite the efforts of the humanitarian actors.

Yoland said South Sudan and donors must realign under localization, resilience, and sustainability.

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