Since COVID-19 was first detected almost two years ago, there are now more than 275 million cases of the virus globally, and 5.36 million deaths registered.

This was revealed by the secretary to Prime Minister, Dr Jimmie Rodgers, during Sunday 19th Talkback show over the national broadcaster, SIBC.

Dr Rodgers released the information in a bid to send a message to all Solomon Islanders of how infectious and deadly the virus is, and the importance of vaccination to protect oneself from being seriously ill or dying.

“We are blessed not to have registered a single case of death although we have twenty (20) reported cases.

“However, how long the country is going to keep COVID-19 away is the important question that we need to ask ourselves and to devise ways to keep us free from the virus,” Dr Rogers said.

He further mentioned that Fiji’s battle against the virus provides valuable lesson that the country can draw some inspiration from.

“Fiji has managed to keep COVID-19 out for little more than a year to date after it made landfall and spread throughout the community – a success story to emulate here,” Dr Rogers added.

He went on to say that since law and order has been restored after the civil unrest of 24th – 26th November, the country is looking at ways to continue with business.

The SPM highlighted that concerns have been raised regarding the entry of around 400 foreign forces into the country in light of COVID-19.

The secretary to Prime Minister however assured the country that the foreign forces have adhered to the country’s strict Covid-19 entry requirements.

“They have been fully vaccinated in their countries’ of origin and have tested negative before boarding,” he assured.

“We need not put them on institutional quarantine because they need to be out there.

“However, the testing regime that we introduced in agreement with the planning team and the commanders of the forces is to have them tested every two days,” the secretary said.

He assured the country that the foreign forces have willingly complied with our requirements and that the measures taken so far have been effective.