Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare warned returning nationals to comply with quarantine rules or face the risk of being charged under the State of Public Emergency laws and regulations.
Prime Minister Sogavare made the stern warning in his nation- wide address today after revealing that returning nationals have been mixing freely in the quarantine centres.
“These people, including students, labour mobility workers and some senior government officials have been mixing freely while in quarantine when they are not supposed to. Such behaviors breach COVID-19 regulations and can cause community transmission of COVID-19,” PM Sogavare stated.
The Prime Minister has pointed out that all returning nationals should remain in their rooms and the only time they can go out is when they had to pick up their food which was delivered to them.
PM Manasseh Sogavare added that prior to boarding flights all these nationals have signed a compliance form and in addition to that, all quarantine rules are posted in each of the rooms in the quarantine centres.
PM Sogavare strongly stated that there is no excuse for not reading the rules and the only exception is for babies and children who cannot read.
He further pointed out that this problem does not cover foreign nationals for they have been compliant with our quarantine rules.
The Prime Minister highlighted that it is sad that nationals have continued to be ignorant of the quarantine rules and that such behaviour does not reflect well on the amount of effort and time spent to arrange their repatriation flight home.
“It is very sad that some of our own citizens blatantly disregard the quarantine rules. This simply means these individuals do not really care about the people of this country. It raises serious questions on whether we should continue to spend so much time and effort to repatriate such people whose actions continue to endanger our frontliners and our country,” the Prime Minister stated.
PM Sogavare warned that government will no longer tolerate such behaviour and those found to have continued to sideline the quarantine rules will be charged under the relevant laws and regulations of the State of Public Emergency.
“I remind all nationals serving quarantine to follow the quarantine rules without fail. We will no longer tolerate any more breaches. In addition to extending quarantine times, such individuals will be charged under the SOPE,” PM Sogavare concluded.