Objective: to prevent the spread of the new strain of coronavirus. This is a statement from the Minister of Public Security and the Response Committee. For passengers arriving by plane, a period of quarantine is planned. All these measures will take effect from Monday. The discovery of about forty positive cases seems to have prompted this decision.
What seems to have provoked this decision is the discovery of about forty positive cases only for the days 4 and 5 January. The land and sea borders are therefore closed from Monday for people, but not for goods, state press releases.
For passengers arriving at Melchior-Ndadaye Airport, seven days of isolation will be mandatory with one test getting off the plane and another on the sixth day. The police are responsible for transporting passengers to these hotels, which are closed to all other customers. According to witnesses, it was easy to escape it until now. Any violation of these measures will be punished in accordance with the law, the Burundian authorities still promise.
Also from Monday, a voluntary and free screening campaign will be launched again in Bujumbura and for thirty days.
Officially, Burundi has registered less than 900 cases and two deaths. But the country has long struggled to act against Covid. The former head of state, Pierre Nkurunziza, had denied his existence, before submitting himself to the disease. His successor, Evariste Ndayishimyie, took the opposite view, assuring that the coronavirus was Burundi’s greatest enemy. But civil society remained very critical of the measures taken so far.