Mauritius Drops Almost All COVID-19 Restrictions

Mauritius has reopened nightclubs and bars, lifted restrictions on gatherings, and scrapped a public mask mandate as it eased COVID-19 measures.

Restrictions on public gatherings and crowds at weddings, funerals and places of worship were lifted.

Bars and nightclubs can reopen, punters can return to horse racing arenas, and picnics can resume at beaches after being prohibited.

Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth said Mauritius had achieved a very high rate of vaccination and could “enter a new phase” of the pandemic more than two years after it began.

Masks would still be required in some indoor settings such as health facilities and public transport, but no longer required elsewhere.

Mauritius had fully opened its doors to international visitors at the start of October, hoping to rebuild its vital tourism industry after long months of isolation because of the pandemic. But a month later, it reimposed a raft of new COVID-19 curbs after cases surged.

Elsewhere, South Africa’s Health Minister Joe Phaahla has also repealed the country’s remaining coronavirus-related restrictions, including the wearing of masks, curbs on gathering sizes and border checks for COVID-19.

Premier Alan Winde has stressed the focus now should be about the economy and creating more jobs.

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