(CMR) Seychelles, the world's most vaccinated nation, with more than 60 percent of its adult population having received two COVID-19 jabs, has seen a spike in coronavirus cases despite its successful vaccination program.
The country has reintroduced restrictions to deal with this surge in cases. All schools have been ordered closed, and sporting activities canceled for two weeks. There is also a ban on household mixing, some gatherings, and the early closure of shops, bars, and casinos. Non-essential workers are also encouraged to work from home, and an 11 pm curfew will remain in force.
As of May 3, the country had 1,068 active Covid cases, of which a third have been detected in people given two doses of either AstraZeneca's or China's Sinopharm's vaccine.
It unclear what has triggered the surge in cases, but testing has detected the South African variant spreading on the islands.
Earlier this year, when president Wavel Ramkalawan first announced the start of the country's vaccination drive, Seychelles had recorded a total of 531 coronavirus cases and a single death. Almost four months later, and despite the country's successful vaccination campaign, the country has recorded a total of 6373 coronavirus cases, resulting in a reported 146 deaths.
On Monday, the country recorded its record number of new infections with 500 cases in a single day.
Health professionals in the country have renewed their call for its citizens to cooperate by wearing masks, sanitizing their hands, practicing social distancing, and abiding by the new restrictions to limit community transmissions.
The Indian Ocean archipelago, which has a population of about 98,000, is highly dependent on tourism.