On Saturday, 27 November 2021, Health Protection Agency(HPA), Maldives has announced that due to the concern over the new Covid-19 variant Omicron, travellers from South Africa, including Namibia, Mozambique, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Eswatini will restricted from entering the country until further notice.
According to HPA, the following restrictions will be implemented effect from November 27, 2021, midnight.
- Travellers who has been who have been in transit for more than 12 hours in those countries and been to the above mentioned countries 14 days prior to entering Maldives.
- Maldivians and work visa holders must complete a 14-day quarantine period if they have transited in the country for more than 12 hours. They will be released from quarantine after testing negative for COVID-19.
News of a new Covid variant, Omicron is of great concern to us. The Technical Advisory Group is meeting today to decide on possible precautionary measures.— Ibrahim Mohamed Solih (@ibusolih) November 27, 2021
Travellers who has already started their journey from the above mentioned countries and has also been to the those countries 14 days prior to to the enforcement of the restrictions must follow the below instructions;
- Take PCR test immediately
- If the traveler is to stay in Maldives for more than 14 days, they must present a PCR test, upon completing 14 days.
- If the traveler is to stay in Maldives for less than 14 days, they must present an exit PCR test.
The restrictions come hours after Maldivian President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih expressed “great concern” over the new variant, and said the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) would be convening to decide on possible precautionary measures. Several countries have imposed travel restrictions after the discovery of a new coronavirus variant in South Africa. Scientists have expressed concerns that the new strain – identified as B.1.1.529 – could be more resistant to vaccines and could spread more easily. Meanwhile, the World Health Organization (WHO) has cautioned against imposing new travel restrictions.