Ghanaians travelling to the United Kingdom have been exempted from the new Covid-19 travel directives regarding vaccine certificates which took effect on October 4.
This follows the public resentment that greeted the UK’s travel advisory that included Ghana, among countries whose vaccine certificates would not be recognised.
In a post on Instagram, the British High Commission wrote “ANNOUNCEMENT 📣 The UK will now recognise vaccine certificates issued in Ghana for Ghanaian’s fully-vaccinated with #AstraZeneca, #Pfizer, #Moderna, #johnsonandjohnson vaccines visiting the U.K.”
In the latest list published on the government’s website, the UK stated that Ghana will be added to the number of countries and territories with approved proof of vaccination at 4:00 am on Monday, October 11.
The UK came under criticism after they posted the new travel regulations that did not recognise vaccines administered across the world, including Africa.
Per the directives, fully vaccinated travelers to the UK from these parts of the world, were expected to go through the mandatory days of quarantine upon arrival.
According to the travel updates issued by the UK, one will qualify as fully vaccinated only if they are “vaccinated under an approved vaccination programme in the UK, Europe, USA or UK vaccine programme overseas with a full course of the Oxford/ AstraZeneca, Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen vaccines from a relevant public health body in several countries including Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Singapore.”
Subsequently, the UK government added Covishield, the India-manufactured Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, to an updated international travel advisory.
This meant that Ghanaian travellers who have been fully vaccinated with Covishield will nonetheless have to undergo 10 days of quarantine in the UK.
Speaking at the 76th United Nations General Assembly on September 22, President Akufo-Addo criticized the directive, describing it as unfortunate.
The UK later promised to work towards recognising Ghana’s vaccine certificate as soon as possible.
This announcement means Ghanaian travelers to the UK prior to October 11 will still be required to undergo the mandatory quarantine.
“If you arrive in England before that date you must follow the rules for people who are not fully vaccinated. If you arrive after that, you can use a vaccine certificate to prove your vaccination status,” they wrote.