S Africa to recognise all COVID-19 vaccination proofs to avoid confusion over documents presented by travellers
- South Africa
The South African government has said it will recognise all verifiable vaccination proofs to avoid confusion and inconvenience to international travellers at the ports of entry after some passengers presented COVID-19 vaccine certificates that are not defined in the current regime of health regulations.
The government has acted swiftly to clear the confusion over Covid-19 vaccination documents being provided by international travellers, some of whom reportedly had to undergo Covid testing and possible quarantine on arrival despite having valid certificates from their countries of origin.
"The South African Government has noted the recent incidents at some ports of entry involving international travellers who presented proof of vaccination which are not defined in the current regime of health regulations," South Africa's Government Communication and Information Services (GCIS) said in a statement on Friday.
It said the proofs of vaccination provided by international travellers were verifiable in terms of current regulations, but this had been complicated by different methods used by various authorities abroad.
"Because there is no globally agreed template of proof of vaccination, it has come to our attention that some countries use vaccination cards with a QR Code, while others use certificates with a QR Code as a proof of vaccination," the statement said.
"Thus, in order to ensure a smooth and fair verification process without inconveniencing the travellers at the ports of entry, the government will, with effect from today (27 May 2022) recognise all verifiable vaccination proofs with QR Codes, either paper-based or electronic," GCIS said.
The authority added that the details on the vaccination certificate or card should correspond with the information of the traveller as they appear on the passport.
The government also reserved the right to contact the relevant embassy or High Commission in South Africa to confirm a type of proof of vaccination issued by the respective countries if the vaccination certificate or card is not verifiable.
"Travellers are reminded that onsite Covid-19 testing services are available at the ports of entry for individuals who are unable to present proof of vaccination, and those who test positive and are experiencing symptoms, will be required to self-isolate," the statement said.
South Africa registered 3,274 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24-hours, taking the number of infections to 3,948,119. There were 36 new deaths also, bringing the number of total deaths to 101,128.
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