UNMISS trains Bentiu Central Prison officers in case management and provides them with materials to facilitate their work

“The knowledge you imparted to my officers during this workshop will have a positive impact on our prison service for generations to come,” said Major General Yohannes Orac, director of Bentiu Central Prison, during the closing of a workshop aimed at improving the management of detainee files. at the South Sudan National Prison Service.

“Knowledge is not like money which disappears as soon as it enters your hands; it grows exponentially as we pass it on and this accurate case management training for prisoners is something that will contribute to the overall development of the Unity State,” he added.

Major General Orac was referring to a two-day training organized by the corrections unit of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) as a proactive response by the United Nations peacekeeping mission to strengthen capacity and fill a major gap in the state prison service.

“We visit the prison every day and identified a big gap in the way records were processed and kept,” explained Alfred Moses Codjoe, the UNMISS advisory chief for corrections in Bentiu. “It is important to keep accurate and accessible records of people in custody, as these records are needed during court proceedings,” he added.

The management of prison records includes relevant information about inmates, ranging from details of their offenses to their health status, visitors received, court appearances and their release from prison.

“We have to manage about twenty registers and it was not easy for us to manage them. Now we know how to differentiate our registers as well as differentiate the information needed in each register,” said William Hakim Deng, a prison officer attending the workshop. “Our work will become much easier now,” he stressed.

Another participant, Lt. Col. William Nyuon, says he believes the training will also help them treat detainees more humanely and in accordance with accepted human rights standards.

“These sessions taught us how to improve the general management of prisons; how to deal with detainees, take care of their health and property; and to help them become better citizens as they serve their sentences,” he said. “It will also help us put a stop to corruption charges,” he added.

Accurate prison records are, of course, essential, but their security, confidentiality and accessibility for future reference also cannot be underestimated.

The UNMISS Corrections Unit also responded to these needs by providing office furniture and equipment.

“Today, our document management team will sit at their tables and fill in the files freely. Prisoner files will now be kept in secure locations,” Major General Yohannes Orac said.

This training is a continuation of the mission’s ongoing efforts to revamp and build the capacity of the corrections sector, thereby contributing to respect for the rule of law throughout Unity State.

“Through funds allocated to Quick Impact Projects, UNMISS has also provided two large dormitories for inmates at Bentiu Central Prison,” Mr. Codjoe said. “Detention conditions have improved, and they will improve if separate sections for minors and women are also provided.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).