Two officials from the provincial department of rural development and agrarian reform and three farmers were placed in isolation when they landed at the East London Airport on Monday after an educational tour in Europe.
The five were isolated immediately after landing to allow health department officials to run tests to check whether they had been infected with the coronavirus while overseas.
Health MEC Sindiswa Gomba’s spokesperson, Judy Ngoloyi, told Dispatch the five were taken straight from the airport for quarantining over 14 days.
Ngoloyi said during the 14-day period the group would not have physical contact with others.
She said the group, even though they had tested negative for the virus, would not be allowed to interact with anyone.
“Of course they will [want to] hug and kiss friends and family; that is why they have been quarantined — to isolate them from everyone,” Ngoloyi said.
During a site visit to Frere Hospital in East London last week, premier Oscar Mabuyane told reporters that there were two government officials and three farmers who had travelled to Germany for an agricultural educational trip.
Mabuyane said: “I had a video conference with them to check their status and safety, and to wish them well on their journey back home.
“They were in good spirits but emotionally drained by the news about this outbreak.
“All these employees and farmers reported that they were all safe.”
He said all government employees on overseas trips to countries affected by the pandemic had been advised they would be screened by medical officials and, where applicable, should go for testing.
Mabuyane’s spokesperson, Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha, said on Monday that the premier was aware the group was being placed in isolation.
“They are doing well,” Sicwetsha said.
BY: SANDISO PHALISO