Happy to be back at home, now I will study online: Omani student back from Wuhan
February 17, 2020 | 11:12 PM
by Times News Service
Arab students airlifted from China were placed in quarantine in Amman and allowed to go home once they’d tested negative.

Muscat: One of the Omani students who was airlifted from Wuhan as a precaution to avoid infection from COVID-19, has said he will continue his studies online, now that he has reached Muscat, and will not be returning to China.

The student, who has chosen to be identified only by his last name, Al Jabri, is now safely back in Oman, and spoke to Times of Oman about his experiences in China, as well as Jordan, where he was airlifted along with other Arab students, and came to Oman last Wednesday.

Also read/ Grateful to be airlifted out of Wuhan: Omani students

“The university contacted me by email to inform me that I will be able complete my studies by online learning for two years because of the coronavirus,” he said.

“I have already started the first phase of my online studies on Monday. I went to China at my own expense, and my specialisation is business studies. I lived in accommodation provided by the university.

“I am very happy to be home among my family and in my country, Oman,” said Al Jabri. “During my time in China and in Jordan, I was thinking about whether I’d ever return to Oman, after all of the tough things I’d had to face over the past four weeks.”

The Arab students who were airlifted from China were placed in quarantine at Al Basheer Hospital in Amman, where they were tested for symptoms of the coronavirus. The students were allowed to go home once they’d tested negative.

“I left the hospital ten days after I came from Wuhan,” he explained. “The doctors and Jordanian officials were very friendly and helpful to me during my stay in Jordan. I first heard about the coronavirus on the 18th of January, when we were informed by the administrators. They asked us to stay at the university, and we were not allowed to go out. They asked us to follow the orders and advice issued to us. Anyone who found violating them would get hard punishments.”

“Once we left Wuhan, we went to Jordan,” revealed Al Jabri. “The official in Jordan took us to the hospital, and they then took away all of our personal goods. Doctors in the hospital checked my temperature again, and this continued for the 10 days, with my vitals being checked every three hours. After two days, doctors took samples of my nasal fluid, which is very important to ensure I don’t have the coronavirus.”

“Two days later, they told me my tests had come back negative and I would be free to leave the hospital in a few days’ time,” he added.

“Ten days later, the hospital told me I could leave, and our embassy officials came to receive us. They took me and my fellow Omanis to a hotel. I am really very happy that I am in Oman and I want to thank the Omani embassies in Beijing and Amman, as well as the Jordanian officials, the doctors at Al Basheer Hospital and my Jordanian friends for taking care of us.”

Another Omani student, who also only went by his last name – Al Farei – will also be continuing his studies online. He is expected to fly out of Jordan in the next few days and then go to his family in Zanzibar, after which he will travel to Oman.

“I am very happy to have made it past what I consider to be one of the most critical phases of my life. I miss my family and my friends in Oman,” he admitted. “When I was in China, I thought I would never see my family and Oman ever again. I still have memories of the hard times that I’ve faced over the past few days. It was really a very hard experience for me. I thank god for protecting us from this epidemic.”

“I will leave Jordan tomorrow and go to Zanzibar because my family is there,” he added. “I am really missing Oman, so I’ll stay with my family for two or three days, and then I will soon come to Oman. I am staying in a hotel in Amman, which is been provided to us by the Omani embassy. Everything is fine at the moment. I go out with my Jordanian friends to the market, the cinema, parks, and restaurants.”

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