South Africans flown home from Wuhan all negative for Covid-19

18 March 2020 - 06:14 By Matthew Savides

Amy Pittaway was on board the airbus A340-600 carrying South Africans coming from Wuhan, China on March 14 2020. The mission saw at least 114 South Africans repatriated from the former coronavirus epicentre back home. Pittaway takes us along her journey from Wuhan back to South Africa.

In a rare piece of good news about the coronavirus pandemic, the health ministry has announced that all the South Africans who were flown home from Wuhan, China, at the weekend had tested negative.

However, they will remain in quarantine as a precautionary measure.

“It gives us great pleasure to announce to South Africans that all the citizens from Wuhan were tested and their results came back negative for Covid-19,” said health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize.

“We continue to keep them in quarantine for the prescribed period and will thereafter initiate the process of reunifying them with the community.”

Mkhize also announced that the number of South Africans to test positive for Covid-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus, had risen to 85. Of these, six had no history of international travel, meaning they are the country's first cases of internal transmission. Four are children, aged between two and five.