4 Apr 2020

New Caledonia president in self-isolation amid Covid-19 outbreak

7:40 pm on 4 April 2020

The president of New Caledonia Thierry Santa has moved into self-isolation after a member of his crisis management team tested positive for Covid-19.

The president of New Caledonia, Thierry Santa.

The president of New Caledonia, Thierry Santa. Photo: RNZ / Jamie Tahana

Mr Santa said he would work from a Noumea hotel room for two weeks to minimise risks to his work colleagues and his family.

He said several people within the team had been in close contact with the individual and they had also all been moved into self-isolation.

Mr Santa said the team's operations had been adjusted and he will be working via video links.

Yesterday, the president of the Southern Province Sonia Backes said one of her close work associates tested positive to the Covid-19 virus and was in hospital.

Ms Backes said she had also been tested and the result was negative.

She said she would be tested again two weeks after the date of her last meeting with the staffer concerned.

Sonia Backes

Sonia Backes Photo: Facebook

Restrictions on gatherings and movement were originally imposed for two weeks and due to expire but they have now been extended until 13 April.

17 people have tested positive so far.