How our two years of hard-work to keep COVID-19 out of our communities was undone by a foreign medical doctor who entered our country illegally and passed on the virus to one of the remotest parts of our country then silently into the heart of our capital city.
9 January— a PNG national known to be a medical doctor and his family of nine entered the Solomon Islands and PNG border illegally from Mortlock on PNG side to Pelau in Malaita Outer Islands.
18 January— PM Sogavare announced for the first since COVID-19 (in two years) that there was community transmission after 5 nationals were tested positive & one foreigner (the doctor) on Pelau.
19 January— PM Sogavare on his national address informed the nation of community transmission after one person who travelled from Pelau on thee 9th of January and arrived in Honiara a day later was tested positive for COVID-19. This new case was one of the passengers that travelled from Ontong Java onboard the vessel MV Akwa that arrived in Honiara on 10th January 2022 after departing from Luaniua, Ontong Java on 9th January 2022.
This latest case was sent for swabbing by his employer who upon hearing the PM’s address yesterday morning was concerned as this individual has just returned from Ontong Java.
There were many other passengers that travelled on the vessel from Ontong Java who are living in different parts of Honiara. The health team has been busy since the PM’s announcement yesterday to identify and contact trace the passengers that arrived in Honiara from Ontong Java on the 10th of January – 9 days ago.
Contract tracing is currently underway in Honiara.
Based on Government’s contact tracing information people that travelled on the vessel are in four general locations in Honiara – these are the Lord Howe settlement at Mataniko, at a house in Ranadi Marine school area, a house in Naha, and a house in Tasahe.