Returning students from the Philippines that are quarantined at Chengs are mixing with each other openly as caught on CCTV and did not stay in their own rooms have been given extended quarantine period, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare announced yesterday.
Additionally, he said this is also due to the reactivation of six new cases from the returning students from Manila.
Sogavare said: “We have we have picked up ‘6 Reactivation Cases’ of COVID-19 from the last flight from Manila that came in on 21st January 2021. All six cases tested positive in our GeneXpert machine but tested negative with the qPCR machine. This indicates extremely low levels of virus fragments in the body that are unlikely to infect other people.”
The PM further explains that all six cases also had antibodies in their system indicating they had all been exposed to COVID-19 before they arrived in Solomon Islands and therefore have developed some protection against further COVID-19 infection.
“All six cases have already tested negative on re-swabbing immediate after their positive tests,” he said.
Sogavare said as a result of these reactivation cases, “we have extended the period of quarantine for those staying at Chengs and the SA accommodation for a further period to ensure we further minimize the risk of transmitting COVID-19 to the communities.”
Also he said: “In this case, because the people staying at Chengs mixed with each other openly and did not observe the instructions to stay in their own rooms, everybody’s quarantine period had to be extended when the reactivation positive cases were diagnosed.
“As we had mounted CCTV cameras at the Chengs quarantine station we know that many of the students staying there were mixing freely so the quarantine period had to be extended for everybody, not just those that had reactivated infections,” he said.
Meanwhile currently around 200 people in the quarantine stations.