Samoans stranded in Fiji coming home

Samoans currently stranded in Fiji will fly back to Samoa on a special supplementary Nadi-Apia and Apia-Nadi flights on Wednesday 25 March.

Only citizens and residents of Samoa will be allowed to board, according to a statement from the Fiji Airways Manager of Public Relations, Angeline Lal on Tuesday afternoon.

Due to coronavirus prevention measures taken by the Government, various Samoan nationals have been stuck at the Nadi airport since Samoa declared its State of Emergency on Friday, March 20.

The orders include the suspension of flights between Samoa and Fiji, which is expected to take effect for 14 days.  

The supplementary return flight is to be operated by Fiji Airways to assist citizens and residents to return home, Ms. Lal said.

From Nadi, flight FJ1253 will depart at 10 a.m. and arrive at 1.55 p.m. local time.

From Apia, flight FJ1252 will take off at 2.55 p.m. 

Only Fijian citizens, Fijian residents, United Nations and European Union work permit holders, and holders of diplomatic passports will be on board. 

All guests may be subject to further boarding requirements at check-in, the statement adds.

"All guests will be subject to the respective Governments’ requirements for international arrivals. This may include requirements for quarantine or self-isolation upon arrival,” Ms. Lal’s statement said.

Samoan nationals in Fiji have complained of experiencing repeated flight cancellations. 

Two Samoan students, Romania Ng Lam Pose and Kailua Rogers, who were reportedly stranded in Nadi can finally say they now have means of returning home after many flight cancellations.

The two students attend the University of the South Pacific (U.S.P) in Fiji and were supposed to leave for Samoa last Friday, when the state of emergency was declared. 

Locals estimate the number of Samoans in Fiji currently is about 40 people, made up mostly of those who flew over for a graduation and returning students.

Fiji on Monday confirmed it had a third case of the coronavirus. 

 

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