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Health minister hails first repatriation drill a success

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 17/06/2020

The minister for Health – Dr. ‘Amelia Tu’ipulotu hailed yesterday’s COVID-19 repatriation drill a success after the drill was completed, where several stakeholders collaborating on the repatriation of Tongans stranded abroad, got to practice some of the procedures they will need to follow upon the arrival of the first repatriation flight.

The minister acknowledged that the drill also highlighted some gaps in their initial arrangements and the taskforce organising the operation is looking to resolve some of the issues they faced yesterday.

Dr. ‘Amelia Tu’ipulotu emphasized the importance of her staff being protected on the front line as this operation was not only about returning the stranded Tongans safely, but ensuring that the staff handling the incoming passengers are protected.

A second drill will be carried out again but it has not been confirmed when this drill will take place. The government is looking to carry out 2 or 3 of these drills to ensure the stakeholders in this operation are absolutely prepared for the arrival of the first group of repatriated Tongans which also pose a risk for the introduction of the coronavirus into the country.

© Radio and Television Tonga News