By Uche Amunike
The United Arab Emirates, UAE, has announced that passengers on Transit flights from Nigeria, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan and Uganda can now enter the UAE with effect on Thursday, August 5, 2021.
This was as announced by the National Emergency and Crisis Management Authority, NCEMA, on Tuesday, via its official Twitter handle.
NCEMA said that passengers travelling from countries that were affected by the ban would be able to transit through its airports from August 5th, Thursday, as long as they show a negative PCR COVID-19 test taken 72hrs prior to their departure.
Part of the statement says: ‘Travel for transit passengers from all countries from which transit passengers have been suspended will be resumed in advance, provided that the passenger’s last destination is accepted with a laboratory check-up within 72 hours of departure and state airports will allocate special lounges for transit passengers’.
‘Emergencies, crises and civil aviation announce the exclusion of new categories of passengers from some of the banned countries, including India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Nigeria and Uganda, as of August 5.’
‘These categories include those with valid residency permits who have received full vaccination doses in the UAE and 14 days have passed since receiving the second dose and who have vaccination certificates approved by the official authorities in the country.’
‘Medical personnel working in the country will be excluded; including doctors, nurses, technicians from restaurants and non-restaurants, and those working in the educational sector in the country who teach in universities, colleges, schools and institutes; from the vaccinated and non-vaccinated categories.’
‘Students studying in the country, humanitarian cases who hold valid residency and workers in federal and local government agencies, and cases of completing treatment in the country, whether they are vaccinated or not, will also be excluded.’
‘All these categories will be required to submit a request on the website of the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship to obtain the necessary approvals in addition to the certificates of vaccination certified by the relevant authorities in the country for the categories from which these certificates are required.’
‘The excluded groups will be obligated to submit a prior PCR test within (48) hours from the date of departure, provided that the tests are from accredited laboratories carrying a QR Code, and conduct a quick laboratory test before boarding the plane.’
Recall that the UAE had announced last month, the travel ban from Nigeria to Dubai as a result of their non-compliance to the COVID-19 protocols.
Passengers from many South Asian and African states were also banned from travelling through its airports this year even though the UAE is a major international travel hub.
Pakistan and India which are important markets for the Emirates, Etihad Airways and other UAE carriers like Fly Dubai and Air Arabia were also not left out. That is how much they want to help the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
They have confirmed that final destination approval would also have to be provided also adding that UAE departure airports will arrange separate lounges for transiting passengers.