Six new cases of the fast-spreading Covid-19 Omicron variant have been confirmed in Rwanda, triggering an escalation of pandemic measures that include shutting down nightclubs and extending quarantines for international travellers.
As a result of six cases of the Omicron variant found in travellers and contacts, the government is now requiring a three-day quarantine instead of the current 24-hour requirement.
In a statement to the press late Tuesday, the Ministry of Health said that a Covid-19 PCR test would be carried out upon arrival and another PCR test would be taken on days three and seven, at the patient’s expense.
As of now, there will be a curfew from midnight to 4 am, while nightclubs will have to close after barely three months of reopening.
In November, South Africa reported Omicron to the WHO. The organism has a large number of mutations. As a result, many governments have reimposed containment measures to curb its spread.
A country of 13 million people, Rwanda has put in place some of the strictest containment measures on the continent and a rigorous testing and contact-tracing regime. In April, it became the first East African country to prohibit direct flights to and from nine countries in southern Africa where the Omicron variant was reported for the first time.
4.2 million Rwandans have been fully vaccinated which is around 60 percent of the 18 and older population.