Thousands of Tongans stranded overseas by Covid-19 restrictions
Nuku'alofa, TONGA — More than 7000 Tongans are thought to be stranded overseas by Covid-19 restrictions.
The chief executive of Tonga's Ministry of Information, Paula Ma'u, said a thousand have registered for repatriation, while a thousand stranded seasonal workers are being registered by the Ministry of Internal affairs.
The first repatriation flight for 50 Tongans was being planned from New Zealand next month and Mr Ma'u said a second could take place 14 days after the first.
But he said at one flight a fortnight it could take years to repatriate everybody.
With passenger flights to Tonga deferred until the 12 September, Mr Ma'u said there was a possibility the Kingdom would soon accept repatriation flights from Fiji and Samoa.