The Canadian government has lifted the ban imposed on travel from Nigeria and nine other African countries.

The country’s Health Minister, Jean-Yves Duclos, confirmed this at a media briefing on Friday.

This comes almost three weeks after the Canadian government banned 10 African countries over concerns relating to the Omicron COVID variant.

Aside from Nigeria, the other countries affected were Botswana, Egypt, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Speaking on the reversal of the ban, Duclos said the new development will take effect from December 18.

“With the evolving situation and overwhelming evidence of community transmission of Omicron in most countries around the world, we have taken the decision to lift the specific measures for travellers returning from the 10 countries initially listed.

“This will be in effect as of December 18, 11:59pm.

“While we recognise the controversial nature of such a prohibition, we believe it was a necessary measure to slow the arrival of Omicron in Canada and buy us some time.

“Given the current situation, this measure has served its purpose and is no longer needed,” he said.

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