Nigeria: Covid-19 Omicron Variant – FG Revises International Travel Protocol

The Federal Government Friday announced a review of its International Travel Protocol effective December 5, 2021, over the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman, Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, made the announcement in a statement.

He, however, did not place restrictions on inbound travellers from any country, including those with large numbers of infection of the Omicron or other variants.

Mustapha said that the revised protocol was aimed at further reducing the risk of importation and exportation of COVID-19, especially the variants of concern.

The SGF said, “All passengers arriving in Nigeria are expected to provide evidence of and comply with COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test to be done within 48 hours before departure; post-arrival day 2 COVID-19 PCR test; self-isolation for seven days (for unvaccinated and partially vaccinated individuals); and day seven post-arrival exit PCR test (for unvaccinated and partially vaccinated individuals).”

For out-bound passengers, the SGF said, “All out-bound passengers are required to provide either of the following documentation: valid evidence of full vaccination against COVID-19; negative PCR test result within 48 hours from the time (of) boarding.”

Mustapha further said that the review of the protocol was based on science, national experience, and global developments.

He assured Nigerians that government would continue to monitor global and specific country situations with a view to taking necessary measures.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19 in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has approved the administration of booster doses for persons that have completed two doses of AstraZeneca, Moderna, Pfizer Bio-N-Tech or one dose of Johnson & Johnson.

The National Primary Health Care Development Agency made the disclosure in a statement yesterday.

The statement quoted the Executive Director of the agency, Dr. Faisal Shuaib as saying that people of 18 years and above are eligible to take the booster.

The statement put an interval of 6 months or more after receiving the second dose of AstraZeneca, Moderna or Pfizer Bio-N-Tech as well as an interval of 2 months or more after receiving the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

He said a COVID-19 booster dose gives greater protection against the virus and enjoined all Nigerians to take advantage of the opportunity offered by the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The agency also advised eligible Nigerians to visit the nearest health facility or mass vaccination site for their booster doses as from the 10th of December, 2021 across all states of the federation.

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