Namibia to temporarily scrap negative PCR COVID-19 tests for fully vaccinated citizens, permanent residents, truck drivers upon entry

People line up to get COVID-19 tests at a testing site in Windhoek, Namibia, June 11, 2021. (Xinhua/Musa C Kaseke)
People line up to get COVID-19 tests at a testing site in Windhoek, Namibia, June 11, 2021. (Xinhua)

Fully vaccinated Namibians, permanent residents and truck drivers will no longer be required to present a negative PCR COVID-19 test result upon entry into Namibia starting Sunday, an official said Thursday.

The above-mentioned categories of people can enter the country at any time with a valid and authentic vaccination card, said Minister of Health and Social Services Kalumbi Shangula at the 39th COVID-19 public briefing on amendments to public health general regulations.

“For all other categories of travelers, including truck drivers who are not fully vaccinated, the validity of a negative PCR COVID-19 test results remains 72 hours from the time of the collection of the specimen to the time the individual presents him/herself at the point of entry into Namibia,” he added.

Shangula highlighted that non-Namibians who arrive with PCR test results older than 72 hours and are not in possession of a de-isolation certificate, will be denied entry into the country while Namibians who arrive without a valid PCR test result or a de-isolation certificate will be subjected to a PCR test at own cost at the port of entry and will be quarantined at own cost.

“Such travelers will be released from quarantine if the PCR results are negative. Namibian citizens and permanent residence permit holders who present positive PCR test results at points of entry may be allowed to proceed to the final destination and be subjected to isolation at their own cost or to supervised home isolation provided that they have obtained approval for such supervised home isolation from the responsible officials,” he said.

According to the official, the current regulations are due to expire at midnight on January 15 and the new measures will commence from January 16 to February 16.