Public Health Officials have confirmed that they have found the new COVID variant, Omicron from the capital Male' as well as Kaafu Maafushi and Dhaalu Kudahuvadhoo.

Speaking at a press conference held by the Health Ministry, State Minister Dr. Shah Mahir said that the recent spike in COVID cases was fueled by the Omicron variant.

He said that up to now, the Omicron variant had been found from 19 tourists and 8 Maldivians in the country.

Speaking at the same press conference, Health Emergency Operations Center HEOC Spokesperson and Medical Officer at the Health Protection Agency HPA Dr. Nazla Rafeeq said that the Omicron variant is now believed to be spreading among the community in the Greater Male' Area.

This comes amid a huge spike in COVID cases being reported in the country and especially the Greater Male' Area.

In the last five days, HPA had reported a total of 1,760 new cases across the country and that 682 cases had been from the capital city.

This had prompted authorities to strengthen restrictive measures in the country including banning gatherings of more than 50 people as well as making it mandatory for individuals traveling from the capital to submit a negative PCR test.