Coronavirus: Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, among African countries that have imposed travel bans, restrictions

WITH nearly 180,000 confirmed cases of Coronavirus around the world, at least two countries in each continent have imposed travel bans and restrictions in attempt to curb the spread of the virus which has now killed over 7,000 people, according to World Health Organisation (WHO)

In Africa, eight countries comprising of Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Uganda, Kenya, Morocco, Namibia, and Chad have restricted travel and banned all foreigners especially from high-risk nations.

On Wednesday, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha, announced during a press briefing, that the country would be imposing travel ban on 13 countries who have at least 1,000 cases of Coronavirus.

The affected countries are the United State of America, the United Kingdom,  China, Japan, Iran, Switzerland, Norway, Netherland, France, South Korea, Germany, Italy and Spain, and the ban is to take effect from March 21.

So far, Nigeria has recorded eight cases of Coronavirus with five new cases announced on Wednesday.

However, other African countries with less confirmed cases have made similar moves of imposing travel bans.


On Tuesday, March 17, Ghana effected travel restrictions, banning all travellers from countries with at least 200 cases of the virus from entering the country, except Ghanaian citizens and permanent residents who have been mandated to observe a 14-day self-quarantine.

Currently, Ghana has recorded six cases of the virus according to WHO.

South Africa

President of South Africa (SA), Cyril Ramaphosa declared a national state of disaster on Sunday, March 15 and announced that the country was closing 35 out of 53 of the country’s land ports of entry.

He also disclosed that travellers from high-risk countries would be denied visas, and those in the country who had travelled to a high-risk country would be subject to testing and quarantine.

SA has the highest number of confirmed cases in Africa. According to WHO, the country has recorded 62 cases of the deadly virus.


Located in the east of Africa, Kenya is another country that has shut it doors in attempt to prevent further spread of Coronavirus.

On March 15, the Kenyan government announced that it was banning all travellers from countries with confirmed cases of Covid-19.

According to WHO, the country has recorded three cases but recent reports state that the case in the country has risen to seven.


Namibia is another country that has been proactive in preventing importation of Coronavirus. With two recorded cases according to WHO, the country on March 14, banned outward and inbound flights from  Qatar, Ethiopia and Germany for 30 days.


Located in north Africa and classified under the eastern Mediterranean region on WHO’s situation report of Coronavirus, Morocco has a record of 38 cases and two deaths.

The country on March 15 also suspended travel from over 8 countries and also shut down the land borders.


With no recorded case of Coronavirus, Uganda has shut its doors to travellers to prevent importing the virus.

The country announced that it is restricting visitors from countries with high cases of Coronavirus, including China, France, Germany, Iran, Italy, South Korea, and Spain, UK and US.


Chad is another country with no known case of COVID-19 that has banned travellers from entering its country. The country has shut down its airports and borders to avoid importing the deadly virus.

Around the world, all continents asides the Antarctica have recorded cases of Coronavirus and many have consequently banned travellers from gaining access into their country – a move against the advice of WHO, which has urged countries to not apply blind travel restrictions in a way that would impact trade and travel.

    Some of the countries that have imposed travel ban and restrictions include South and North America region – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela

    In Asia, the list includes Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam.

    In the Middle East, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia have all banned travellers and shut down borders.

    In Europe, at least 26 countries have closed down borders to restrict travel.

    Seun Durojaiye is a journalist with International Center for Investigative Reporting (ICIR).

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