26 Mar 2020

Six from Tokelau scholarship group stranded in Fiji

6:14 pm on 26 March 2020

Six Tokelau residents are stranded in Fiji after both New Zealand and Samoa shut their borders.

They are part of a group of 20 scholarship students and family who were in Fiji to study.

Nadi International Airport in Fiji

Nadi airport is closing to all services Photo: RNZI/Sally Round

The head of Tokelau's public service said they tried to repatriate them but most were now stranded in Fiji and New Zealand because of the Covid-19 lockdown.

Aukusitino Vitale said 14 of the students were currently in quarantine in Auckland.

Mr Vitale said a public servant who was on a training course in Fiji was also now isolated in Wellington.

He said five of those stranded in Fiji belong to one family.

"Four had New Zealand passports but the mother had a Tuvalu passport so we had some issues around visas which we are currently working on. And of course with the lockdown in New Zealand that makes it a little more challenging," Mr Vitale said.

"The other student is on a Tuvalu passport."

He said her grandparents lived in Fiji and she was being looked after.