The lockdown has been extended for another 24 hours to be concluded on Friday at 6pm, if there are no changes to the numbers of COVID-19 cases.

To date the number of confirmed cases remains at 26, since the first positive cases surfaced last Friday from the passengers of the direct flight from Brisbane Australia.

Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa confirmed the extension during her special announcement.

“This afternoon the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases remains at 26 and 21 of these cases are passengers who arrived in Samoa from Australia; with five cases comprising of nurses who are monitoring the positive cases who are quarantined at the Moto’otua hospital. “All of them are well and asymptomatic.

Testings for all those in quarantine will be conducted tomorrow and the results should be confirmed by later afternoon (Thursday) or Friday morning.

“In this regard Cabinet considered and approved this afternoon the extension of the nation-wide lockdown for another 24 hours,” said Fiame

The lockdown will conclude on Friday and that conditions will remain including opening for services from 8am to 2pm.

“This extension will allow the Ministry of Health to finalise test results of all of those in quarantine.”

Fiame said Cabinet will also revisit threat levels and will announce the next steps of actions to be taken in due time.

Samoa is on its fifth day of lockdown; an initial ten passengers tested positive and another five were added a few days later. On Monday five frontline nurses looking after the positive cases also tested positive. All are in isolation at the national hospital Moto'otua.

A total of 263 frontline workers who were at Faleolo Airport for the flight from Brisbane had been taken into quarantine as soon as the initial positive cases were confirmed.