30 September 2010 – Officials from the Southern Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (SSRRC), the United Nations and non-governmental organizations concluded a two-day brainstorming workshop today on a state-level humanitarian action plan to meet critical needs in the most vulnerable counties of Upper Nile State.
"In some counties, people do not have sanitation facilities such as clean water, and toilets ... medicine supply and health facilities as well as schools," said Upper Nile State SSRRC Director, Peter Pal Chol.
According to Tito Awando, of the UN Resident Coordinator's Support Office, five of the states 13 counties -- Akoka, Baliet, Maiwut, Fashoda, and Nasser -- have been put on the high priority list.
"These counties mostly have poor infrastructure, including minimum health and education facilities. There are no school buildings and health clinics, food production is very low, and malnutrition is very high," he said, adding that Akoka had first priority, as it was a new county needing immediate assistance to develop.
SSRRC representatives from 12 Upper Nile State counties attended the workshop, where responsibilities were allocated and a time frame to meet county needs was defined.
"The SSRRC county representatives provided extensive information to enable us to map the needs to define the priority areas," International Organization for Migration Program Officer Mohamed Elsunni said.
Mr. Chol noted that he was unable to obtain details of county needs until representatives had come to the workshop with their reports. "The areas that are difficult to reach are now covered ...," the SSRRC director said.