The United Arab Emirates has included travellers from Nigeria and three other African countries in it red list over the surge in the spread of the Omicron variant of Covid-19.
The Emirates government has now restricted all inbound flights for national and international carriers and transit passengers from Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia.
In an announcement by UAE’s National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Emergency Management Authority and the General Civil Aviation Authority on Thursday said the suspension, which would take effect from Saturday, December 25, was due to the emergence of Omicron and a spike in COVID-19 cases.
The agency stated that flight operations will continue to transport passengers from the UAE to the same countries.
“The UAE nationals, their first degree relatives, diplomatic missions, official delegations between UAE and these countries and Golden residence holders are excluded from this decision.
“The excluded categories should present a negative COVID-19 test obtained within 48 hours of departure and a Rapid-PCR test at the airport within six hours of departure whenever possible and another PCR test at the airport upon arrival to UAE.
“A 10-day quarantine and a PCR test on the ninth day of entering the country is required for UAE nationals, their first-degree relatives, diplomatic missions and golden residence holders,” the statement read in part.
GCAA also affirmed that it is required for those coming from the four countries through other countries to stay in latter countries for at least 14 days before being allowed to enter the UAE.
Also, the statement noted that UAE citizens are barred from travelling to the four African countries except for the country’s emergency treatment cases, official delegations, and scholarships.
This is coming barely 24 hours after the Federal Government reinstated the daily flights of Emirates Airlines to Nigeria after the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority offered daily flight slots to Nigeria’s Air Peace to operate into Dubai Airport.
On Monday, December 13, the UAE had reportedly banned foreign airlines from airlifting Nigerian passengers into the country.
To this effect, Ethiopian Airlines, Turkish Airlines, and other airlines connecting transit flights from their hubs into Dubai refused to board Nigerians.