A group of South African citizens who are stranded in Thailand attempted to charter a plane home for just over 16 million baht without success.
The group of almost 300 South Africans is scattered across various provinces in Thailand, stranded in the country and unable to get home due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A WhatsApp group, organized by the Home Away from Home project brought the stranded citizens together in an attempt to locate them and bring them back to South Africa.
However, the database of South African citizens stranded abroad, not only in Thailand but across 133 countries, was closed last Friday by the DA’s Shadow Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Darren Bergman.
Bergman said that he believed most or all citizens had been located through the project and the South African government will attempt repatriation. However, he also warned that due to lockdowns it will “take longer.”
South Africans stranded in Thailand believe that he is not doing enough to try and get citizens home, with one national who is stranded in Bangkok saying, “other than capturing information in databases, he has done nothing to help.”
Due to the frustration of not being able to get home, some 263 South Africans planned to charter a flight for 16.2 million baht. The group attempted to pool their money together to afford the flight home with some citizens offering to help others who couldn’t afford the expense.
However, the plan came to a halt when the group couldn’t get clearance from the South African government.
Frustration is rising among South Africans trapped in Thailand, with one tourist saying:
“I was crushed when the extension was made because what happens to us? We see other countries taking back their people and South Africa is repatriating other citizens but why not us? Are we not important?”
Source: IOL | Photo: IOL