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Mu Jianjun (M) Economic and Commercial Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in South Sudan during the handover ceremony in Junba.

China provides COVID-19 equipment to refugees in South Sudan

By Awan Achiek

The Chinese government on Thursday donated personal protective equipment for South Sudanese refugees through the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). 

Juliette Murekeyisoni, UNHCR Deputy Representative in South Sudan, said the donation the donation by Beijing of 1.3 million items will help people at 17 primary health centers in the country.

 “As you know COVID-19 is not only a crisis for health it has affected populations worldwide economically, these COVID-19 equipment will help support refugees in South Sudan to deal with COVID-19 pandemic,” Murekeyisoni said during the handover ceremony in the Jebel suburb of Juba, the capital of South Sudan.

The PPE items provided by the Chinese Embassy, include gowns, eye protection goggles, N95 masks, medical gloves, and gumboots. 

The equipment will protect more than 900 frontlines medical and support staff from infection as they respond to and serve people in need at 17 Primary Health Care Centres/Units and 2 Hospitals in Upper Nile, Unity, Central, and Western Equatoria states. 

At least more than 400,000 people in refugee and host communities will benefit.

Mu Jianjun, Economic and Commercial Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in South Sudan, said the equipment will help the bravest frontline health workers protect themselves while fighting against the pandemic.

“I sincerely hope the masks, gowns, gloves, goggles, and other PPE delivered today (Thursday) could be distributed to front-line medical staff and refugees in South Sudan’s refugee camps as soon as possible to help them resist the virus,” Mu said.

Dr. John Rumunu, the Director-General for Preventive Health Services and Covid-19 Incident Manager, said the support from the Chinese government will help South Sudan to bolster its health system.

“I want to let you know that COVID is still here, we are still reporting COVID-19 cases and the weekly running average varies between 4 to 5 cases per day,” Rumunu said. 

The equipment will be used to provide health and medical services to 80 percent of refugees specifically women and children, as well as more than 60,000 residents of host communities.

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