Dirco repatriates South Africans from US in first of three flights

The first flight will depart Washington around 7.30pm local time and is expected in Johannesburg around early evening on Sunday.
The first of three Department of International Relations organised flights departs Washington DC for South Africa later on Saturday, repatriating some 275 citizens who were stuck in the United States since the coronavirus restrictions were implemented.

This is one of three flights that will return citizens to the country this month.

The first flight will depart Washington around 7.30pm local time and is expected in Johannesburg around early evening on Sunday.

Among the passengers are citizens who were working in hospitality, particularly resorts or country clubs in the United States.

Some were on holiday, other passengers on cruises that are no longer operating due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The South African Embassy in Washington also confirmed that a second flight would depart on Sunday followed by a third repatriation flight on May 10.

Passengers will be expected to enter a two-week quarantine upon arrival in South Africa.

The South African government also repatriated its citizens from countries such as Brazil and the United Arab Emirates in March and April.

South Africans repatriated from China
The country also repatriated 114 South Africans in March from Wuhan, China, where the coronavirus was believed to have started from.

The repatriates were then placed on a 14-day quarantine period, they have since been released.

Another 76 TVET college students returned from China after being on work placements in different Chinese companies. The placements were a result of arrangements made by different Sector Education and Training Authorities.

Upon arrival, the students were placed under quarantine at the Birchwood Hotel in Kempton Park for 14 days.