Severity: Critical Alert

Entry/Exit: Authorities in Angola declare a state of calamity May 26 in efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19. Travel and business disruptions likely.

This alert affects Angola

This alert began 28 May 2020 15:29 GMT and is scheduled to expire 09 Jun 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Nationwide (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Travel and business disruptions

The government of Angola has downgraded the country's state of emergency to a state of calamity May 26-June 9 in continuing efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Citizens are urged to stay at home unless for essential services and shopping, however; some commercial activities will be permitted to resume, providing sanitation and social distancing measures are adhered to. Incremental phasing of permitted capacities is taking place May 26-June 27. Recreational activities such as fairs, libraries, and museums will be permitted to reopen from June 24. Additional nonessential business and services, such as clothing shops and markets, will also be permitted to reopen at this time. Several restrictions remain in place, including:

  • Entry and exit into the capital, Luanda, remains restricted. All leisure movement between provinces remains banned. Movement between provinces for commercial reasons is allowed, except for Luanda.
  • The Hoji Ya Henda suburb in Luanda remains under quarantine since May 13.
  • Public services can open 0800-1600 with 50 percent of the normal workforce.
  • Essential public works are allowed to continue.
  • Urban public transport can operate 0500-1800 with 50 percent passenger capacity.
  • Protective masks remain compulsory on public transport and in public areas.

Other existing measures are listed below.

  • The country's land, sea, and air borders are closed. The movement of essential goods, humanitarian operations, and the repatriation of foreign nationals continues.
  • Education facilities remain closed and informal markets can only operate on certain days and at reduced times.
  • Industrial activity can resume. The exact parameters are unclear.
  • Residents have been urged to stay at home.

Security forces are likely to remain deployed nationwide to enforce the movement restrictions. Clashes between security personnel and persons not complying with the regulations are likely.

Background and Analysis
As of May 28, Angola has reported 73 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with four deaths and 18 recoveries. Angola's travel restrictions and preventive measures correspond with similar actions other governments are taking globally in response to the spread of COVID-19. Angola's decision to relax some measures has likely been taken to allow some economic recovery. Should the number of COVID-19 cases increase, previously relaxed restrictions may be reapplied. Likewise, a continued low number of cases may result in further relaxation of restrictions.

COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments. Plan for queues and delays at available shopping centers. Avoid large public gatherings and concentrations of security personnel.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

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