Categories: On the GoTop Stories

South Africa imposes travel ban on US, UK nationals — and cancels visas

Femi Owolabi

The South African government has imposed a travel ban on nationals of the US and UK over the coronavirus pandemic. 

The ban also extends to Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Germany and China — countries the South African government listed as “high-risk”. 

The country has also cancelled visas previously issued to nationals of the “high risk” areas.

Cyril Ramaphosa, South African president, in an address on Sunday, said the ban will be effective from March 18.

“We are imposing a travel ban on foreign nationals from high-risk countries such as Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom and China as from 18 March 2020,” he said. 

“Visa issuing to visitors from these countries is cancelled from today and previously granted visas are hereby revoked.

“Effective immediately, South African citizens are advised to refrain from all forms of travel to or through the European Union, United States, United Kingdom and other identified high-risk countries such as China, Iran and South Korea.

“Government will continue to regularly issue travel alerts referring to specific cities, countries or regions as the situation evolves based on the risk level.

“Any person who has visited high-risk countries in the past 20 days will be denied a visa. South African citizens returning from high-risk countries will be subjected to testing and self-isolation or quarantine on return to South Africa.” 

The president said travellers from medium-risk countries such as Portugal, Hong Kong and Singapore  will be required to undergo “high intensity” screening. 

He said all travellers who have entered South Africa from high-risk countries since mid-February will be required to present themselves for testing.

The president said starting from Monday, 35 out of the 53 land ports will be shut down, and two of the eight sea ports will be closed for passengers and crew changes. 

“Effective immediately, all non-essential travel for all spheres of government outside of the Republic is prohibited. We further discourage all non-essential domestic travel, particularly by air, rail, taxis and bus,” he said. 

The president also announced that schools will be closed from Wednesday and will remain closed until after the Easter weekend. 

He added that the government is aware of the confirmed case of a student who has tested positive for the coronavirus at Wits University, and those who have been in contact with the student will be quarantined.

Recent Posts

  • On the Go
  • Top Stories

‘I can’t afford a PR firm’ — Okonjo-Iweala seeks volunteers for WTO campaign

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigeria's candidate for the World Trade Organisation director-general election, says she is in need of volunteers for her…

July 8, 2020 1:31 AM
  • On the Go
  • Top Stories

Nigeria’s COVID-19 recoveries exceed 12,000

A total of 280 COVID-19 patients have been discharged in the last 24 hours, bringing Nigeria's total number of recoveries…

July 8, 2020 12:25 AM
  • On the Go
  • The Nation

FG engages Pakistan over video of ‘Nigerian being tortured by drug barons’

The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) says it is engaging the Pakistani authorities to investigate the abduction and torture of…

July 7, 2020 11:35 PM
  • On the Go
  • Top Stories

Magu sent back to police custody as operatives search his residence

Ibrahim Magu, suspended acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has been sent back to area 10…

July 7, 2020 11:00 PM
  • Business
  • On the Go

PZ Cussons seeks shareholder approval for Nutricima sale to FrieslandCampina

PZ Cussons Nigeria says that it will decide, in an extraordinary general meeting with its shareholders, on how it will…

July 7, 2020 10:46 PM
  • On the Go
  • The Nation

DSS appeals judgment awarding N10m to man detained for using Hanan Buhari’s previous phone line

The Department of State Services (DSS) has filed an appeal challenging the judgement which awarded a N10 million fine against…

July 7, 2020 10:42 PM