UAE lifts restrictions for Nigerian passengers, others on Saturday


Abiola Seun

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities have said restriction on flights arriving from Nigeria and 11 other African nations will be lifted on Saturday.

UAE National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) said it was lifting the ban initially imposed as part of measures to prevent the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

According to the authorities, the said flight arrivals can resume from countries like Namibia, Congo Republic, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, and Botswana.

Others are Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, the authorities said in a post on Twitter Wednesday.

Recalls that the UAE had last December issued a travel restriction on passenger flights from Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, and Ethiopia.

NCEMA and the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) said the directive, which took effect December 25, was due to concerns related to the spread of the omicron COVID-19 variant.

“The excluded categories should present a negative COVID-19 test obtained within 48 hours of departure and a Rapid-PCR test at the airport within six hours of departure whenever possible and another PCR test at the airport upon arrival to UAE,” the statement had said.

NCEMA also announced on Wednesday that entry procedures have been updated for flights originating from Ghana, Rwanda and Uganda.

It noted that passengers are required to take a PCR test 48 hours before departure, test where possible at the departure airport, test on arrival and adhere to all precautionary measures when visiting the UAE.

NCEMA added that the new rules come into effect by 2.30pm on Saturday.

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