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First passenger ship arrives at Walvis Bay this Thursday. More to follow in December

First passenger ship arrives at Walvis Bay this Thursday. More to follow in December

The 18-month dearth of passenger vessels at Namibian ports is finally coming to an end this week when the 680 pax ocean liner, the MS Europa calls at the Port of Walvis Bay on Thursday 25 November 2021, where it will remain berthed for two days. This 11-deck luxury cruise liner is almost 200 metres from bow to stern.

The MS Europa will then depart for Lüderitz where it will lie for only a day before its scheduled rendezvous on 05 December at Walvis Bay again.

During December, another luxury cruise ship, the MSC Lirica will dock at Walvis Bay on five different days, and the Norwegian Jade will arrive on 31 December.

Preceding the MS Europa’s arrival on Thursday, the Namibian Port Authority issued a directive for handling Covid-19 screening of all passengers and crew. This directive has to be accepted by the ship’s captain in writing before entering any Namibian port.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Namport’s Executive: Commercial Services, Elias Mwenyo said international cruise ships will only be allowed in the ports if a so-called ‘Free Pratique’ has been issued by the Port Health Officer from the Ministry of Health and Social Services.

Upon arrival, all passengers and crew will be thermal screened either by the Port Health Officer of by the ship’s medical personal under supervision of the health officer. During this process passengers may not disembark.

If any persons with symptoms are detected, the rest of the passengers as well as the crew will also not be allowed to disembark. These persons will then be tested for Covid-19 in a laboratory. If they are positive, they will be taken to an isolation facility attached to the port and the vessel will be required to leave.

If they are negative, the passengers and the crew will be allowed to disembark.

“The Namibian Ports Authority is confident that the measures put in place are adequate and will be able to give our visitors a safe and enjoyable Namibian experience. As an entity, our first responsibility lies with ensuring the safety of our workforce, port users and the Namibian community at large,” stated Mwenyo.


About The Author

Mandisa Rasmeni

Mandisa Rasmeni has worked as reporter at the Economist for the past five years, first on the entertainment beat but now focussing more on community, social and health reporting. She is a born writer and she believes education is the greatest equalizer. She received her degree in Journalism at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) in June 2021. . She is the epitome of perseverance, having started as the newspaper's receptionist in 2013.

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