South Sudan Situation Report, 19 July 2019

HIGHLIGHTS

  • High-level delegation led by the Humanitarian Coordinator visits Yei to see Ebola preparedness and response efforts

  • Ebola preparedness and response activities heighten as a case is confirmed near the South Sudan border

  • Humanitarian Fund brings change in the lives of 2.9 million people

  • More than 3,300 internally displaced people return to Baliet County, Upper Nile

  • Almost 7 million people facing critical lack of food

High-level delegation led by the Humanitarian Coordinator visits Yei to see Ebola preparedness and response efforts

On 15 July, a high-level delegation visited Yei, an area at high risk of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), to see the activities underway to prepare for, and respond to, a potential EVD outbreak in the country, and understand the challenges around these.

The delegation included the Government, the Humanitarian Coordinator, ambassadors from donor countries, UN agencies and representatives of international NGOs.

“Diseases such as Ebola don’t respect boundaries, race or religion so all must ensure that they work together to prevent its cross-border transmission into South Sudan,” said Alain Noudéhou, the Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan.

“Although South Sudan has not confirmed any EVD case, implementation of effective public health measures is critical to manage the risk posed by South Sudan’s complex humanitarian context, the history of previous outbreaks, increasing global travel and proximity to DRC,” said Dr. Olushayo Olu, WHO Country Representative to South Sudan.

At a meeting with the State Governor in Yei, it was emphasized that community acceptance and ownership of preventive measures to stop the virus from spreading into South Sudan were key. Informing at-risk communities about Ebola and telling them what to do to protect themselves, and increasing public awareness by providing information through all communication channels, religious and community leaders were also emphasized. The delegation commended the efforts of the different organizations, and the representatives of the donor community reaffirmed their commitment to support the EVD preparedness efforts in the country.

Much progress has been made in preparedness for EVD in South Sudan. But insecurity, inadequate health facilities, lack of experience in managing EVD, poor communication networks, poor road conditions and uncontrolled movement of travelers across the border remain a challenge.

Operational interference has been a constant concern. In Yei in June there were significant operational interference by security officials, affecting two UN EVD teams on mission.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.