By Bukar Bolori
United Kingdom has insisted that travelers from Nigeria would still be quarantined.
She, however, said in the spirit of the long-term partnership with Nigeria, she is working with Nigeria’s National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) to ensure that a stop is put to the regime of quarantine that Nigerians have to undergo on getting to United Kingdom despite having received COVID-19 vaccines.
A statement on Sunday by the UK High Commission in Nigeria read that: “Further to our statement of 25 September 2021 on COVID-19 vaccines and rules related to travel to the UK, the British High Commission Abuja would like to provide further information about travel rules. This is in response to a number of questions we’ve received from members of the public and from the media.”
The statement read that rules for international travel to England will change from the red, amber, green traffic light system to a single red list of countries and simplified travel measures for arrivals from the rest of the world.
All travellers who have been in a country or territory on the red list in the 10 days prior to travelling, will only be allowed to enter the UK if they are a British or Irish national or if they have residence rights in the UK. On arrival they must quarantine in a managed hotel and take two COVID-19 tests.
The statement added that from 4 October, all travellers to England from the majority of countries that are currently on the amber list, including Nigeria, must: take a pre-departure test- to be taken in the three days before travel, book and pay for day 2 and day 8 COVID-19 tests to be taken after arrival.
They are also expected to complete a passenger locator form- any time in the 48 hours before arrival, and after they arrive, travellers must quarantine/self-isolate at home or in the place they are staying for 10 days; take a COVID-19 test on or before day 2 and on or after day 8 travelers may be able to end quarantine/self-isolation early if they pay for a private COVID-19 test through the Test to Release Scheme.
The statement also read that from 4 October, vaccinated travellers from a small number of countries and territories – the majority of which are currently on the green list will be exempted from quarantine and from certain testing requirements, provided they can prove their vaccination status and other requirements are met, including having booked a day 2 test.
The statement further said that this approach will be kept under regular review and further changes are likely as part of a phased opening up of international travel for vaccinated travellers. The UK is committed to opening up international travel and we are using our COVID-19 vaccine certification process to enable all those wishing to enter the UK to do so safely.
“We understand that there has been some frustration that the new UK travel rules will continue to require people travelling to the UK from Nigeria to quarantine despite having received two doses of recognised COVID-19 vaccines in Nigeria.”
“Following a pilot with the United States of America and the European Union, the UK is working to recognise vaccine certificates from other countries as part of a phased review of the many COVID-19 vaccine certificates issued across the world. This includes recognising Nigeria’s vaccine certificate and – in the spirit of our long-term partnership – we are working with Nigeria’s National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) to ensure that this happens as soon as possible.”