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JUBA - 10 Apr 2024

South Sudan launches humanitarian coordination center

South Sudan’s Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (RRC) launched the National Humanitarian Coordination Operation Center along with a website on Monday. These platforms aim to streamline humanitarian response and provide disaster risk information.

The center serves as a centralized facility focusing on achieving durable solutions, enhancing emergency response preparedness, and conducting early warning analysis. It also acts as a repository for risk management information.

During the launch on Monday, Peter Gatwech Kulang, Chairperson of RRC, emphasized that the center is a coordination mechanism facilitating interactions between the government, humanitarian organizations, and stakeholders.

 He further said the purpose of the centre is to enhance emergency preparedness, response, and recovery programming to ensure timely support for the most vulnerable populations, ultimately saving lives and protecting livelihoods and infrastructure.

Kulang highlighted South Sudan’s persistent experience of multiple climate-induced disasters such as floods and droughts over the past five years, affecting approximately one million people each year from 2019 to 2023.

Dominic Sam, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Country Representative in South Sudan, underscored the country’s vulnerability to various climate-induced and man-made disasters. These events occur with increasing frequency and intensity, challenging the resilience of both the people and government systems in South Sudan.

Over the past four years, floods have affected over a million people, resulting in many being internally displaced. Additionally, more than a million returnees have entered the country due to the crisis in Sudan.

Speaking in Juba, South Sudan’s capital, Dominic Sam, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Country Representative, emphasized the country’s vulnerability to disasters and emergencies. He highlighted the lack of reliable systems and facilities that provide advanced warning information for preparedness and mitigation measures.

“It is common for communities, government agencies, and partners to be caught off guard by the occurrence of disasters or emergencies, as such events are unpredictable,” Sam stated.

He highlighted the importance of having a central facility where humanitarian and development actors can collaborate, share information, and coordinate efforts under the government’s leadership. Without such a facility, there is a risk of duplicating actions during response and recovery efforts.

“The establishment of a national coordination center enhances the country’s preparedness and response to disaster emergencies and displacements. It aligns with the proactive, risk-informed, and people-centered approach of the South Sudanese government in addressing climate-related and manmade disasters,” Sam explained.