Canada lifts travel ban on South Africa and nine other African countries

Canada has announced that it will be lifting its travel ban on South Africa and nine other African countries following criticism.

Travellers queue at a check-in counter at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg on 27 November 2021.

JOHANNESBURG - Canada has announced that it will be lifting its travel ban on South Africa and nine other African countries following criticism.

The ban was imposed last month to curb the transmission of the Omicron variant that was discovered by South Africa.

On Friday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the increase in Omicron cases was scary.

Critics said the ban on travellers from 10 African countries made no sense given the rapid spread of Omicron, which is forecasted to replace the Delta variant in dominance.

Speaking at a media briefing on Friday, Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos said they will reimpose testing requirements to avoid overwhelming their healthcare system.

Travel restrictions on flights from South Africa, Lesotho, eSwatini, Botswana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Malawi and Egypt will end on Sunday.