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Covid-19: Dire conditions in Port Sudan quarantine centres

Sovereign Council Chairman El Burhan visits proposed coronovirus quarantine centres in Khartoum, March 15, 2020 (SUNA)
Sovereign Council Chairman El Burhan visits proposed coronovirus quarantine centres in Khartoum, March 15, 2020 (SUNA)

The Sudanese Ministry of Health reported 146 new coronavirus patients, including one death on Thursday, which brings the total number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Sudan to 1,964. People in eastern Sudan’s Port Sudan worry about the dire conditions in the city’s isolation centres.

The Directorate General of Emergency and Epidemic Control of the Federal Ministry of Health reported in a statement this early morning, that 120 new cases were recorded in Khartoum on Thursday, 10 in El Gedaref, seven in Kassala, six in El Gezira, and three in East Darfur, recorded on Thursday.

Members of resistance committees in the neighbourhoods of Port Sudan, capital of Red Sea state, have expressed their serious concern about the city's quarantine centres.

Drinking water and food are lacking, sanitation facilities are very bad, and administrative supervision is absent, they said in a press statement on Thursday.  

They point to the daily arrival of more than 150 people, mostly returning Sudanese, into the country through border crossings, who have to be quarantined for two weeks. The dire situation has earlier led to people fleeing from isolation centres.

The activists call on the Port Sudan locality management and the Red Sea state quarantine department to improve the conditions in the quarantine centres designated for people who arrive through the border crossings.

The appealed to charity organisations to provide meals to the people in the city’s isolation centres, noting that those currently in quarantine did not receive any meal on Wednesday.

Radio Dabanga reported last week that the Covid-19 pandemic is stressing Sudan’s health system. Medics have been complaining about a severe shortage of Personal Protection Equipment (PPEs). The Sudanese Nursing Association has set a deadline for the provision of PPEs, threatening with a nationwide strike if their demands are not met.

Last month, Radio Dabanga published an op-ed by Cameron Hudson, who stated that “given the almost total lack of testing and near-absent health care system, that figure [of confirmed cases in Sudan] is most assuredly grossly underestimated”.

Covid-19 cases in Sudan as of May 13. The data are not
warranted to be error-free (OCHA SitRep of May 14, 2020)

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