Omicron: UK Asked by Dirco for Compensation, South Africa Off the Red List

Omicron: UK Asked by Dirco for Compensation, South Africa Off the Red List

  • The Department of International Relations and Cooperation has demanded compensation from the United Kingdom for losses due to their travel ban on South Africa
  • South Africa has incurred financial losses, particularly in the hospitality sector, due to the travel ban
  • The United Kingdom have scrapped their travel red list, citing the global spread of Omicron as the reason

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JOHANNESBURG - The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) has requested that the United Kingdom (UK) pay South Africa back for the financial damage the country has sustained due to the UK imposing a travel ban shortly after the Omicron variant was discovered.

In November South African scientists discovered the Omicron variant. After the discovery was announced, the UK implemented a travel ban on several southern African countries, including South Africa. Many other countries followed suit and also banned travel from the region.

Read also

"The damage is already done": South Africans unmoved by UK's decision to end travel ban

Antony Phillipson, the British High Commissioner to South Africa, has stated that he recognises the damage caused by the UK placing a travel ban on South Africa, EWN reports.

UK, South Africa, red list, Covid-19, Omicron, coronavirus, travel ban, travel restrictions, Naledi Pandor, Dirco
International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor spoke on 14 December about Dirco's call for compensation from the UK. Image: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

UK removes travel ban on South Africans

According to BusinessTech, South Africa is one of the 10 countries that have been removed from the UK's 'red list'. The other countries are Zimbabwe, Angola, Malwai, Zambia, Botswana, Nigeria, Lesotho, Mozambique, Eswatini, and Nambia.

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Sajid Javid, the UK's Health Secretary, said that travel bans are irrelevant due to the Omicron variant having spread globally. Javid has noted the possibility of compensating people who have incurred costs due to the travel ban.

“Now that there is community transmission of Omicron in the UK and Omicron has spread so widely across the world, the travel red list is now less effective in slowing the incursion of Omicron from abroad,” Javid told parliament.

Read also

Covid 19: UK records 1st Omicron death, 40% of British cases are due to the new variant

South African's react to Dirco's demands for compensation from the UK

@Nothemba_Qwabe said:

"The UK is still a bit unsafe for me so I won’t be taking up this opportunity. Thanks for the information though. Appreciated."

@Hlomza_ZA suggested:

"Maybe the SA government should compensate its citizens for these lockdowns since last year."

@BereniceBarker shared:

"Always with the demands or a begging bowl. If they’d all only spent as much effort stemming the tide of corruption and thieving."

@truthcreator believes:

"We want the ANC to compensate all taxpayers for wasting their money!"

@ChrystalKristie said:

"The entitlement of mzanzi is on stilts,whew!"

South Africans unmoved by UK's decision to end travel ban

Earlier Briefly News reported that the United Kingdom government has looked into cancelling its travel ban red list that bars Southern African country citizens and other countries from travelling to the UK.

Read also

Ahmed Kathrada Foundation wants Guptas to face charges, plans to bring them back to SA

The UK imposed restrictions on these countries after the Omicron variant announcement was made by South African scientists last month. The UK has considered cancelling the requirement for travellers who come from the 11 high-risk countries who enter the country to undergo quarantine in a hotel for 10 days.

Quarantining at a recognised quarantine UK hotel would cost travellers between R50 000 per person and R67 000 for couples for the 10-day stay. Travellers will be allowed to quarantine at a hotel of their choosing after the new policy is implemented.

Source: Briefly News

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