A Maltese man’s Russian wife is stranded in Moscow after strict travel restrictions were put in place for people who are yet to be vaccinated from COVID-19.
The man who spoke to Lovin Malta detailed how his wife was unable to get the vaccine while in Malta because she had not yet received a valid residence permit with her appointment for the permit now delayed till August.
“There is too much red tape and lenient procedure and manual paperwork. Nothing is digital or electronic and we ended up running to and fro. But if she does not make it to Malta how is she to get the residence permit?” the person said.
He started reaching out to authorities at the start of June, when the legal notice was announced.
The man has made several requests to health authorities to intervene but has found little assistance. Authorities are also unwilling to issue a visa to his wife to first visit Greece to quarantine before returning to Malta and subjecting themselves to another quarantine.
“I am trying to abide by the law and get the vaccine for her, but this entails getting the residence permit,” he said.
“Do the Maltese authorities not understand that all this is costly? Do they want this to end up in a divorce which will cause even more cost issues? After all, as per EU law, she is entitled to Freedom of Movement as any other EU citizen.”
Reports of a COVID-19 bureaucratic nightmare unfolding are nothing new. Lovin Malta has received countless stories from people caught inside the administrative headache amidst ever-changing regulations.
One man living in Malta has been waiting for almost two months to get clearance from health authorities to travel to visit his unwell father who is now in critical condition.
Another man, an Austrian national told Lovin Malta that he received his second vaccine dose at the start of June but was unable to download his certificate.
After weeks of failed attempts, he emailed a COVID-19 authority and received his certificate but with two mistakes – a typo in his name and the date of his second dose wrongly listed as the date the certificate was actually issued.
In another instance, a Polish woman who was fully vaccinated in Malta months ago has found it difficult to obtain their COVID-19 vaccine certificate.
This is because the system isn’t accepting her Polish ID card as proof of identity and is asking her for Maltese documentation, which she never got because – as an EU citizen – it wasn’t necessary for her to work in Malta.
She urgently needs to travel to Poland next week to sort out an important family matter and is now seriously considering getting vaccinated again while she’s there so that she can obtain a certificate and return to Malta without having to quarantine.
Lovin Malta has since been informed that authorities reached out to the woman soon after the article’s publication and she has managed to obtain her vaccine certificate.
What do you think about the issue?