Nigeria restricts passengers from South Africa over virus spread

Nigeria restricts passengers from South Africa over virus spread

Nigeria has barred passengers who are not citizens or permanent residents from entering the country if they have been in South Africa in the past 14 days over Covid-19 concerns.

coronavirus nigeria
Image courtesy: AFP

The decision announced late on Monday comes almost two months after a similar restriction on Brazil, India and Turkey because of concerns over rising cases of more virulent coronavirus strains. 

Those measures would remain for four more weeks, Boss Mustapha, the secretary to the government, said in a statement.

"South Africa, has... been added to this category once more," he said, adding that Zambia, Rwanda, Namibia and Uganda would be on a watch list.

South Africa recorded more than 100,000 cases in the past week, with 20,000 in the past 24 hours alone, he said.

Nigerians and permanent residents who have been in those countries in the previous 14 days must undergo mandatory quarantine in a government-approved facility for a week  on arrival, the government said.

All passengers arriving in Nigeria will now have to show a negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of travel rather than the previous 96 hour period.

The virus has infected 167,532 people and claimed 2,119 lives in Nigeria, Africa's most populous nation, since the first recorded case in February last year.

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