Keeping Sudan’s Government connected: Ensuring safe distance through tele-conferencing

March 29, 2020

UNDP staff setting up tele-conferencing technology in Sudan's government offices, to enable staff to stay connected remotely and minimize contact.

COVID-19 is forcing new ways of working. UNDP has ensured Sudan’s key government offices can function remotely, effectively and securely as they manage the nation’s response to the crisis.

Making sure the people of Sudan understand and follow Ministry of Health advice to maintain personal distance, and minimize meetings and interaction, is critical.

But, with limited tele-work technology, ensuring key officials at the offices of Sudan’s Prime Minister, and the cabinet-supporting Council of Ministers, are able to shift from in-person to remote meetings and work posed a challenge.

Particularly with an immediate need, other pressing concerns, and COVID-19 cases starting to grow.

Intervening, UNDP Sudan urgently supplied and installed an office-worth of laptops and devices, and two teleconference facilities, allowing the offices and staff to stay connected remotely, host multiple virtual meetings simultaneously and securely, and lead by example with minimizing contact.

“Managing a crisis like this is a big enough job already,” said Elsheikh Khidr Ahmed, the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff. “Having this simple but vital need taken care of ensures we can continue our response effectively and safely.”

“A key part of UNDP’s work globally and in Sudan is supporting core government functions, so this was a fast and easy way to assist,” says UNDP Sudan’s Resident Representative Selva Ramachandran.

"We've now provided similar support to key officials at Sudan's Peace Commission and the Ministry of Justice."

“We’re urgently looking at how we can similarly help other Government and state-level offices, and support the Ministry of Health and others with short-term and long-term assistance for the COVID-19 response.”

Senior staff from Sudan’s Prime Minister’s Office, including his Chief of Staff, at a socially distant handover of donated technology alongside UNDP Sudan Resident Representative Selva Ramachandran.

More broadly, UNDP in Sudan has taken rapid action to protect those we serve, our communities and our staff against COVID-19. We are prioritizing the health and wellbeing of everyone we interact with, and providing responsive and on-going support to the people and Government of Sudan to address this crisis and its long-term economic and societal impacts.

As part of UNDP’s COVID-19 response, and support for Sudan’s transition and governance, this assistance was made possible with UNDP core (regular) funding, provided by a number of contributing nations. Core resources allow UNDP to enable coordinated, flexible, and rapid responses to development needs and emergencies.