30 Nov 2020

Covid-19: Samoa tightens measures for returning citizens

6:24 pm on 30 November 2020

Samoa has imposed strict measures for returning citizens on upcoming repatriation flights from New Zealand and one from Fiji.

Samoa PM Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi.

Samoa PM Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi. Photo: Samoa govt

This follows confirmation of two positive Covid-19 cases found to have been infected before they had boarded the last repatriation flight from Auckland earlier this month.

Samoan Prime Minster Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi said approval would only be given to returning citizens permanently residing in the country and scholarship students.

But they must present a medical report clearing them of symptoms of the coronavirus before entering Samoa.

Meanwhile, the two people who tested positive cases are now in isolation.

The prime minister said the sailor who had worked in Italy became infected in August, and that the 70-year-old man who travelled from Australia had contacted the virus before he travelled to New Zealand to catch the same flight to Samoa.

All passengers on that flight have been required to spend an extra seven days in quarantine while awaiting the second test in New Zealand to reconfirm the two positive cases.

The remaining repatriation flights from New Zealand are expected next Friday and Monday.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs