RwandAir implemented the decision after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Coronavirus as a public health emergency on January 30th, 2020. The global outbreak currently includes 98 cases in 18 countries, outside China.
RwandAir announced that all affected by that decision will be reimbursed or allowed to postpone their travels to later dates. Flights to Mumbai, India will not be affected.
Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority (RCAA) is currently conducting an awareness campaign with aviation personnel on the prevention of the people.
Apart from RwandAir, other carrier airlines including British Airways, Swiss Airlines, and Kenya Airways have also temporarily stopped flights to China. Austrian Airlines has also stopped travels to and from Beijing and Shanghai until February 9th, 2020.
American Airlines announced that it had stopped flights to Shanghai and Beijing between February 9th and March 27th, 2020. The same applies to Lion Air Group from Indonesia, Air India, and Seoul Air.
RwandAir launched flights to Guangzhou, China on June 18th, 2019. Flights depart from Kigali International Airport to Guangzhou Baiyun three times a week passing through Mumbai, India for a duration of 16 hours.
The Ministry of Health in partnership with Rwanda Biomedical Center (RBC) recently deployed a permanent rapid response team of 10 at Kigali International Airport to protect travelers against Coronavirus. Travelers are also mandated to respond to a series of questions to remove all doubts they carry the virus.
The Coronavirus has so far claimed the lives of 170 people only in China and continues to spread to other countries. The virus was spread by travelers from Wuhan, China where the virus originated from, who made it to other countries before there were border restrictions.
In Germany, Japan, Vietnam, and the United States combined only 8 people were identified to carry the Coronavirus. Symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties and in advanced stages, pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.
The Coronavirus spreads through direct contact with the infected person, sneezing and coughing. To prevent the spread of the virus, the World Health Organization advises regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing. In addition, it is important to avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.