State of emergency extended to fourth month

By Soli Wilson 03 July 2020, 6:56PM

The state of emergency has been further extended for another month, bringing the lockdown conditions into their fourth month. 

The Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi, during his weekly 2AP programme, said as long as there is still a threat of the novel coronavirus reaching Samoa "we will continue to close our borders."

Some state of emergency orders were eased in the previous month with the reopening of nightclubs and rules governing gatherings of people at title bestowals and birthday parties were relaxed.  

But apart from pre-approved repatriation flights operated by Air New Zealand, Samoa's international borders remain closed.

Due to those proactive measures from the Government, Samoa remains to be amongst one of only 12 recognised United Nations member states which are coronavirus free - almost all of which are in the Pacific region. 

Tuilaepa also revealed that a few passengers who had returned to the country from Auckland last week currently remain under close observation after displaying flu-like symptoms.

"There are about three who have been showing signs of the flu and were taken away to be isolated in the hospital and to be kept under close observation," he said.

"Because at the moment, it is the absolute cold season in New Zealand, the month of July is the peak of winter in New Zealand and also for us.

"And that's the reason why we are keeping a close eye on those people."

To date, there have been more than three repatriation flights carrying more than 100 people on each flight. 

The arrivals are made to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine period at designated locations; others are able to be self-isolated at home but only if they meet strict criteria and adhere to strict requirements.

The Prime Minister also revealed during his programme that seasonal workers seeking a way home have been left to their employers in New Zealand to arrange a special charter flight for their return.





By Soli Wilson 03 July 2020, 6:56PM

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