NYANZA – A twelve member delegation from Sudan on Tuesday visited Nyanza Vocational Centre as part of a study tour meant to solidify cooperation with Rwanda centered around demobilisation, disarmament and reintegration (DDR) of demobilised soldiers.
The Centre in Nyanza provides skills training to demobilised soldiers with disability under the Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) cooperative project in partnership with the Rwanda Demobilisation and Reintegration Commission-RDRC. JICA is running a similar programme in Sudan.
At the vocational centre, the delegation was briefed on the six months skills training programme offered to demobilised soldiers in the fields of welding, plumbing, carpentry, construction, tailoring, art and design.
Dr Suad Abdo Elrazig Mohamed, the Reintegration Manager in the North Sudan Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration Commission said that the social reintegration and reconciliation that has been started in Rwanda will give them base for starting up a similar programme in Sudan.
“The commitment of the Rwandan Government to the programme both financially and politically, and the good coordination with other partners like JICA is impressive. The use of home grown mechanisms for people to forgive one another and live together is also a very important lesson learnt from Rwanda,” she said.
“We want to replicate this success story back home in Sudan. Our government is very committed politically and financially to the programme and we are looking forward to working with partners like JICA who have already made commitments to the DDR program,” she said.
Romano Opio Kuot, a State Coordinator from the Southern Sudan Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration Commission, said that the experiential study tour will help their government in reintegrating demobilised soldiers in Southern Sudan.
“We have more than 2,000 soldiers who were demobilised when the exercise started last year; they are now starting the reintegration process and involvement with the community. Many have started vocational training with assistance from JICA, lessons and good practices in Rwanda will help us conduct this exercise much better,” said Opio.
Through the UN DDR programme, Sudan is targeting 180,000 demobilised soldiers from the North and South Sudan. Two commissions and one national council based in the President’s office has been set up to coordinate the DDR activities.