Dakar, Senegal: Port issues circular on stowaways

February 2018

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Club Correspondents Budd have reported that the Dakar Authorities have reminded vessels of the security measures concerning watchmen and access that must be followed when vessels are in port.

In English, the circular reads:

RE: Fighting Illegal Emigration

It has come to my attention that the terms of our circular no. 02274/PAD/DG/DOP/COP/SS dated 15 July regarding the fight against illegal emigration are not being properly applied by some port users. 

Therefore, I would remind you that the following security measures concerning watchmen and access to vessels in the port apply at all times:


1. For vessels at berth:

Four watchmen should be deployed as follows:

  • Two at the gangway of the vessel;
  • One at the bow of the vessel;
  • One at the stern of the vessel.

2. Access to vessels:

  • All personnel boarding and disembarking from vessels must be identified and counted;
  • This information should be logged.

Once they have been appointed, some security companies have not been fully respecting the security measures listed above.

Any failure to meet the above requirements will be sanctioned, in accordance with current legislation.

The circular is signed by the Managing Director of the Port of Dakar.

Budd Dakar reports that in recent years, permission to disembark stowaways who boarded in Senegal has usually been granted and this is still the case. However, it is now even more important that the vessel be able to demonstrate that the security regulations were strictly applied.

Vessels which have not fully complied with the security measures and then found stowaways from Senegal on board are likely to face longer delays and heavier sanctions, including large fines, from the authorities than vessels which met the security regulations but nevertheless need to disembark stowaways from Senegal. It is expected that fines will be smaller in the latter case.

Budd’s local office recommends that vessels calling in Dakar ensure that they receive the latest updates from their agents before berthing. It should also be noted that to obtain clearance to sail from the Harbour Master, vessels need to present a stowaway search certificate.

The situation remains the same where "imported stowaways" as they are known in Dakar are concerned. Authorisation is never given for the disembarkation of stowaways who did not board the vessel in Senegal.

Our thanks to Budd Senegal for providing the above information.

Members may wish to review the Clubs website article about Stowaway prevention measures, https://www.steamshipmutual.com/publications/Articles/Stowaway0309.html