President Cyril Ramaphosa has on Thursday called on all South Africans living in Wuhan, China, to come back home as fears mount over the continuous spread of the coronavirus.
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In a statement released on Thursday night, Ramaphosa said the decision followed several requests from South Africans living in Wuhan – the Chinese city considered to be the epicentre of the virus asking to be evacuated,
The president said the government was in touch with their families and that necessary arrangements to have them flown back have been made.
“It is estimated that there are 199 South Africans citizens in Wuhan as per the latest consolidated list from the Department of International Relations and Cooperation. At this stage, 132 of them have expressed the desire to be repatriated.”
“None of the affected individuals has been diagnosed with the virus nor have they exhibited any symptoms thereof. Upon arrival in South Africa, they will be placed in quarantine for 21 days as an additional precautionary measure.”
The World Health Organisation declared the virus a global public health emergency last month and has now warned the international community to brace itself for a pandemic.
Meanwhile, information available to YEN.com.gh shows that the first case of the coronavirus has been recorded in Africa.
The World Health Organization (WHO) revealed that this was recorded in Algeria.
Its regional director-general for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, explained that "the window of opportunity the continent has had to prepare for Coronavirus is closing. All countries must ramp up their preparedness activities."
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