THE Diamond Princess cruise ship, which was quarantined. Picture: AP
THE Diamond Princess cruise ship, which was quarantined. Picture: AP

Two South Africans who worked on Japanese cruise ship cleared of coronavirus

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Mar 4, 2020

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Cape Town – The two South Africans working on a Japanese cruise ship who tested positive for the coronavirus (Covid-19) are in the clear after undergoing treatment.

The duo were part of the crew of the Diamond Princess, which has been parked off the coast of Yokohama, Japan.

On February 25, the government was alerted by the Japanese authorities that there were 12 South African crew members working on the cruise ship when it was affected by the coronavirus. 

Government Communication and Information System acting director-general Phumla Williams confirmed that they have tested negative for the virus.

Health department spokesperson Popo Maja, when asked whether there were any plans to repatriate them back home, told TimesLIVE: "The private companies that hired (them) will decide on that."

The cruise ship arrived in the Japanese port of Yokohama on February 1 with 3 700 people on board. A total of 705 people aboard the ship tested positive for the virus. 

They were transported off the ship and given medical treatment. It was only at the end of the quarantine period on February 19 that the South African government was alerted about the 12 South Africans who had been among the crew members on board the ship.

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