Repatriate travellers released from quarantine

A Ni-Vanuatu traveller who was stranded in Australia due to the COVID-19 pandemic says he is happy to have returned home.

George Malas was stranded in Australia for over three months along with his wife and children, after he travelled to Australia for a wedding in March.

“I can’t wait to go back to my home in Mele and enjoy the freedom in Vanuatu because there are no COVID-19 cases here,” Mr Malas said

“I thank the Government for the quarantine facility workers who have taken very good care of us during the 14 day quarantine period.”

The Malas family was stranded in Australia along with many other Vanuatu citizens when the borders of both countries closed in late March.

Mr Malas was welcomed by his mother after leaving quarantine this week and she also acknowledged the Government’s efforts in repatriating stranded citizens.

Another Vanuatu traveller, Alex Micky, who came back from Japan through Australia, also thanked the Vanuatu Government, which he said had delivered on its “huge responsibility to repatriate its citizens”.

Around 153 Vanuatu travellers who were the last people being held in quarantine since returning from abroad, finished their quarantine on Wednesday this week.

This completes the first phase of the Vanuatu Government’s repatriation plan which brought home around 1000 Vanuatu nationals. The second phase will kick off next month.

Vanuatu still has no cases of COVID-19.

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