More details emerge around Tonga's first Covid-19 case

Source: 1News

More details have emerged about the Covid-19 case that travelled from Christchurch to Tonga earlier in the week.

The young person had been working overseas as a missionary and arrived in New Zealand six weeks ago to catch Wednesday's repatriation flight back to Tonga.

The fully vaccinated person is currently in MIQ and is showing no symptoms, Richard Hunter of the Church of Jesus Christ told 1News.

The person is Tonga's first Covid-19 case in the entire pandemic and it has prompted thousands of people to flood the capital's main vaccination centre.

"I am very, very worried especially for my children and their safety," concerned resident Eleanoa Ma'u told 1News.

Aerial Nuku'alofa - the capital of the Kingdom of Tonga

Two thousand locals were vaccinated on Friday alone, pushing the country's first dose vaccination rate close to 90 per cent, with Tonga's Minister of Health Dr Amelia Tu'ipulotu saying it was "very exciting".

In Christchurch, officials are scrambling to work out where the young missionary caught Covid, but it's likely to have been in the city. There's also concern amongst Canterbury's Pasifika community.

"Our families live in large groups and we go out and see our families in large groups as well so that is always a concern for us because that person left New Zealand and went to Tonga. But we hope this will encourage our families to get vaccinated because that is the only thing that will protect us at this point," Etu Pasifika's clinical director Dr Monica Nua-George said.

The situation is believed to be low risk and contained at this stage, with people waiting to see what the days ahead bring.