JUBA – The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) on Thursday provided support to South Sudan’s police to bridge the gap between the police and the civilian community as a means to curb crime during the festive season.
“The UN development program looks forward to continued collaboration and growing our collective efforts to build a police service that is professional, competent and a friend of all South Sudanese,” Christy Ahenkora, UNDP deputy resident representative for South Sudan said in a statement.
Ahenkora who spoke during the launching of a newly built police facility located southwest of capital Juba said communities can only follow their dreams if their security is guaranteed.
“Launching this police station during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence is symbolic of our support to the police to increase responsiveness to GBV crimes. We want this station to be open to every citizen, female, male, adults and children, so they feel safe to walk in to report a crime and receive support,” Ahenkora said.
She said inclusive police community relations comprise a cross-section of community members, including traditional leaders, local justice actors and the police can prevent crimes in the young republic.
UNDP’s support to South Sudan National Police Service (SSNPS) also includes establishing Emergency Call Centres in Juba and Wau, including 23 special protection Units which provide life-saving services to combat GBV and other sensitive crimes.
“A police station cannot stand alone without the support of the public, and working together with the civilian population can combat and eradicate crime,” James Piu Yak Yiel, deputy Inspector General of South Sudan National Police Service said.
“There is no work of the police that can be done in isolation without involvement of the community, and we are appealing to police personnel to garner respect of the community first so that cooperation is given in return,” he added.
Recently, the UN mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) announced its plan of setting up a temporary peacekeeping base in Central Equatoria’s Lobonok County following a surge in armed attacks on civilians and humanitarian convoys in the region.
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