Chaos as most passengers of SN Brussels flight on Monday 22nd June avoid quarantine
#Covid-19: Chaos as most passengers of SN Brussels flight on Monday 22nd June avoid quarantine as they arrived in The Gambia.
Due to inadequate quarantine arrangements, corruption and greed, about 120 passengers of the SN Brussels flight that landed at the Yundum International Airport on Monday, 22nd June have avoided quarantine and are at large in the country with potential to infect others if they were to be carrying the Coronavirus disease.
According to the complains of a Dutch passenger on board the flight into the country, about only 30 of the 150 passengers are at Atlantic Hotel, as the rest have left either through bribing officials or simply because they were angry with lack of proper quarantine arrangements when they arrived into the country.
Given the recent increase in the COVID-19 cases in The Gambia, allowing a potential 120 untested people into the country is putting a lot of Gambian lives at greater risk!
According to the arriving Dutch national, the passengers were first taken by escort to the Tamala Hotel to be quarantine. However, upon arrival at the €120 per night hotel, there was no members of staff to process the passengers as it was alledged that government does not want to pay the €120 per night rate to quarantine the SN Brussels passengers. By this time, only about 50 passengers were left who were then told that they will now be taken to Atlantic Hotel in Banjul instead.
Allegedly, it was much later that the Gambian health officials turn up with more police to take the remaining passengers (now about 30) to Atlantic hotel for quarantine. Although passports of all passengers were retained with phone numbers, about 120 of them is said to have gone into the community with potential to infect others if any of them were to be carrying the virus!
This begs the question: Why was the SN Brussels flight allowed into the country when the Gambian airspace is supposed to have been closed to commercial flights activities?
Several attempts to reach the officials of the Ministry of Health proved futile as we went to press. Consequently, this medium contacted the spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry who promised to get back to us within 30 minutes of our call. The Foreign Ministry Spokesperson called us back and referred us the Civil Aviation Authority and the Ministry of Health as these are the authorities responsible for this domain.
Several calls and email to the the Ministry of Health were unanswered as we went to press.