A case of the South African variant confirmed in Mayotte

A member of the medical team treats a patient with Covid-19 at Mamoudzou hospital (CHM), in Mayotte, June 11, 2020. – Ali AL-DAHER / AFP

A case of a South African variant of the coronavirus has been detected in Mayotte and the authorities have decided to suspend international sea and air links for 15 days from Sunday, the prefecture announced on Saturday.

Travel between Mayotte, Metropolitan France and Reunion is only allowed for “compelling reasons”, added the prefecture in a statement. “Due to health developments, the prefect therefore decides to suspend international sea and air links from Sunday January 17 for a period of 15 days”, according to this source.

Tracing of contact cases

The Prefecture of Mayotte recalls that due to suspected presence in the region of the variant “SARS-CoV-2 501.V2 appeared in South Africa, protective measures” had already been taken, including screening by means of antigenic tests of all passengers on flights and maritime links from abroad since January 10, “more than 550 people”.

Flights from continental East African states had also been suspended since Thursday. “After analysis of the samples sent by the ARS to the Institut Pasteur in Paris, a first case of the SARS-CoV-2 501.V2 variant was detected on Friday” and was isolated. Contact tracing has been put in place to isolate them as well.

The Prime Minister announced Thursday emergency restrictive measures in Mayotte but also in Guyana and Reunion, to protect them from the risky variants of Covid-19 circulating in these regions. In Guyana, border control has been tightened and negative tests are required to reach the West Indies and the mainland.



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