NPSSS prison staff cheer at the new Malakal Vocational Training Centre in Malakal Central Prison. Photo: UNDP

6 December 2021, JUBA—The National Prisons Service of South Sudan (NPSSS) officially expanded its in-prison vocational training programme with the launch of the Malakal Central Prison Vocational Training Centre in Upper Nile State on Monday, 6 December 2021. The VTC is set to impact inmates and prison personnel with technical skills in the different trades, including fishing, as well as entrepreneurial skills to maximize available opportunities in the local market through self-employment.

The launch event was presided over by the Acting Governor of Upper Nile State and State Minister for Youth, Culture, and Sports Hon. Hafsa Alijak; Deputy Director-General of NPSSS Lt. Gen. William Andrea Lado; Ambassador of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands H.E. Jelte van Wieren; the Resident Representative of UNDP South Sudan Samuel Doe; Acting Head of Field Office, UNMISS Malakal, and representatives of UN agencies, funds, and programmes.

“Inmate’s welfare through rehabilitation and learning is at the core of our mission [at NPSSS]. We are delighted with regards to our mutual collaboration with UNDP and thank the Kingdom of the Netherlands for being strongly behind the prison vocational centres in Juba, Wau, and now Malakal,” said Deputy Director-General of NPSSS Lt. Gen. William Andrea Lado at the inauguration ceremony.

The Malakal Central Prison Vocational Training Centre consists of four newly constructed classrooms and an administrative block fitted with, vocational and administrative equipment. The Malakal VTC is equipped to offer courses in eight (8) specialities: (1) Carpentry and Joinery, (2) Building and Construction, (3) Electrical Installation, (4) Metal Fabrication and Welding, (5) Auto Mechanics, (6) Agriculture, (7) Hair Dressing and Beauty Therapy, and (8) Tailoring and Fashion Design.

Acting Governor of Upper Nile State and State Minister for Youth, Culture, and Sports Hon. Hafsa Alijak; Deputy Director-General of NPSSS Lt. Gen. William Andrea Lado; Ambassador of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands H.E. Jelte van Wieren; the Resident Representative of UNDP South Sudan Samuel Doe; Acting Head of Field Office, UNMISS Malakal, at Malakal Central Prison. Photo: UNDP

The vocational training centres in Malakal, Wau and Juba are funded by the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

“The establishment of this VTC is focused on creating a future for those who at one point went astray and put them on a path of becoming helpful to their community again. It is my hope that the classrooms here will be a start to a new beginning for [the VTC] students, their families, and their communities,” said Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands H.E. Jelte van Wieren.

The administration of the VTCs is designed to promote indigenous expertise to ensure sustainability and utilize collaboration of the NPSSS under the Ministry of Interior, as well as the Ministry of General Education, Science and Technology; the Ministry of Labour and Human Resource Development; and UNDP.

“Our vision for support to prisons in South Sudan is underpinned by the philosophy of restorative justice. All humans are born with a purpose and endowed with the potential to contribute to society. The Netherlands, UNDP, NPSSS and other partners are gathered here today as a reflection of our readiness to invest in you, so you can earn skills, go back to your towns and villages, and contribute to society as a person with new abilities and renewed purpose,” UNDP Resident Representative Samuel Doe told the gathered inmates at Malakal Central Prison.

Tour of the new facilities at the Malakal Central Prison Vocational Training Centre. Photo: UNDP

The State Minister of Communications expressed gratitude to UNDP for the continued support to Rule of Law and other government institutions in Upper Nile State.

 

The expansion to Malakal follows the success of the in-prison vocational training programme in Wau and Juba Central Prisons. NPSSS graduated its first batch of 105 trainees on 18 June 2021. At Juba Central Prison, NPSSS celebrated the fifth batch of trainees consisting of 178 inmates from the VTC on 14 June 2021. The latest cohorts bring the total number of VTC graduates to 907 people (769 inmates, 49 of which are female; and 138 prisons personnel, 37 of which are female).

 

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For more information contact:

 

Major-General Anthony Oliver, Director Public Relations Director, NPSSS: +211 921 655 049

 

About UNDP South Sudan Access to Justice, Security and Human Rights Strengthening Programme

 

The UNDP Access to Justice, Security and Human Rights Strengthening Programme is supported by the Kingdom of Netherlands, Government of Japan, the Peacebuilding Fund, the Resilience, Stabilization and Recovery Trust Funds for South Sudan and its core resources. The programme seeks to strengthen the capacity of key justice and security actors including the Ministry of Interior, Police, Prisons, Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Law Review Commission, Human Rights Commission and Judiciary by reducing case backlog; addressing prolonged and arbitrary detention; harmonizing traditional and formal justice sector; and increasing access to justice for the people of South Sudan and promoting a culture of human rights respect.

 

UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, we offer global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations. 

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