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96 arrived last night, 27 turned back at Manila Airport due to visa issue

Dr Rodgers talking to the press today.
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The direct flight from Manila to Honiara last night has brought 96 students, whilst 27 were turned back at the airport by Philippines authorities because of visa issues.

Speaking to journalists this afternoon, Secretary to the Prime Minister Dr. Jimmy Rodgers said initially there were 144 passengers booked for the flight but 123 were cleared by Immigration Headquarters of the Philippines to board the flight however when they got to the airport 27 were not allowed to board the flight by Immigration officers at the airport due to visa issues.

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Dr Rodgers said the government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is now working with Philippines authorities to ensure the students board the next flights.

Meanwhile the 96 students who arrived last night are now quarantined at two camps in the Henderson area where they will stay there for 21 days.

According to Dr. Rodgers, there are still 305 students left in the Philippines including 11 children.

He said the fact that not all of them came last night has created a little bit of jigsaw puzzle for the government.

Dr. Rogers said it would require more than two flights to bring all of the remaining students back but they are also looking at options including bringing them home via Air Niugini.

Dr. Rodgers reveals that all Philippines arrivals will undergo 21 days quarantine and the second flight to the Philippines will only happen after 19 October.


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