In response to numerous enquiries from the public, Prince Bubacarr Aminata Sankanu, senior information officer and focal person for strategic communication and external public relations at The Gambia National COVID-19 Response Coordination Secretariat, has issued the following clarification for travellers coming to Banjul by air:
- Having a COVID-19 test certificate within the 72-hour time frame before departure to Banjul International Airport (BIA) is not in itself sufficient. The test certificate must clearly indicate your status as NEGATIVE for you to be eligible to go home. If, on the contrary, your test results are POSITIVE or INCONCLUSIVE, you will be subjected to testings and the mandatory 14-day quarantine which may also incur quarantine expenses;
In the event the positive test results or active cases are subsequently classified as “mild” and not “severe” for admission in treatment centres, home-isolation could be recommended by the Health officials;
- Arriving passengers are kindly advised to carefully study and understand the contents of their COVID-19 test documents before ticket confirmation to Banjul or departure. Those who are illiterate in English or the official language of the approved COVID-19 testing centres could request the assistance of proficient and reliable person(s) or institutions for better explanation of their indicated COVID-19 statuses;
- English being the official language, COVID-19 certificates must be in English or translated by certified experts where appropriate;
- There is no Regulation exempting babies from pre-departure COVID-19 test. The Gambia COVID-19 situation reports have documented cases of 6-month old babies being positive. It is therefore, advisable that all arriving passengers, regardless of age, produce the valid COVID-19 test certificate upon arrival;
- For compassionate flights with human remains, the cause of death must be clearly written on the official death certificates. Only bodies of Gambians who die abroad are allowed entry for burial. Persons accompanying the dead must not forget their respective COVID-19 test results.