Cabinet considers returning flight from Australia
Cabinet has yet to decide on whether to arrange a special flight from Australia to bring home Samoans left in the country including candidates for the 2021 General Election.
Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, revealed the plan, saying health workers would need to be extra cautious if such a flight were to eventuate.
“We’re looking at arranging a special flight from Australia as some of the students have finished their studies,” he said.
“It won’t be easy because this will mean we will double the workload of our officials.”
The initiative was driven by numerous requests by families, the P.M added.
Others left behind in Australia and in need of returning include candidates for the 2021 Election.
Families have also made requests for the return of deceased relatives for burial.
A flight from Solomon Islands arrived last Sunday, while one is expected to arrive from New Zealand this Friday.
But as the Government awaits its decision on the Australian one-off flight, Tuilaepa has shot back at social media critics of repatriation flights.
“People are often complaining about opening our borders to New Zealand where the virus has gotten back to a risky state again,” he said.
“But we advise them to be patient and pray for the cure to be found.”
The Government is also taking precautions and advice from health workers while discussing these operations according to the P.M.
“Some people overseas have thrown disrespectful words [around] saying there might be some number of people affected already,” he said.
“But we cannot hide any confirmed cases.”