Tema Regional Immigration Command receives two Ghanaian stowaways
The young men, aged 15 years and 16 years, were intercepted midway during their voyage, aboard on MSC DYMPHIA vessel from San-Pedro in Cote D’Ivoire to Antwerp, Belgium.
They were said to have been found hiding in the vessel’s engine compartment during a routine inspection by the crew and handed over to MSC TATYANYNI at the Port of Antwerp, bound for Tema.
In a press release to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), the Regional Public Affairs Officer of the Tema Command, DSI Mercy Budu, informed that the two teenagers hailed from Takoradi and Cape Coast respectively, and were into farming and fishing.
DSI Budu said the two, who did not have travel documents, started their journey at Abidjan in Cote D’Ivoire with the intention of reaching Europe.
The Immigration Officer hinted that the two teenagers had been processed and handed over to the Tema Regional Police Command for further investigations.
In a similar development, the Command received five persons at the Tema Harbour for attempting to stowaway to Europe on board M.V ZIM RIO GRANDE and CMA CGM LAPIS vessels.
Henry Okechuku, Jimmy Omorode and Nino Brown, Joseph Obasi and Hope Ekele were said to have illegally hidden in the vessels, which had docked at the Tema Harbour from Tin Can Island Port in Nigeria.
DSI Budu informed that the said persons are currently in the custody of the Tema Regional Police Command “after going through the immigration process of interrogation, nationality determination and statement taken.”
She indicated that the suspects were awaiting travel certificates from the Nigerian High Commission for their repatriation to Nigeria and further action in accordance with standard practice.
In view of these developments, the Tema Regional Commander of the GIS, Assistant Commissioner of Immigration (ACI) Belinda Adwoa Sika Anim, had re-echoed the dangers associated with stowaway and cautioned Ghanaians, especially the youth, to refrain from such unproductive ventures.
ACI Anim revealed that the Command had recorded nine stowaway cases in the first half of 2019, all being males.
“This is a worrying situation especially when such acts lead to extreme injuries and death,” she said.
The Commander called on stakeholders to help stop illegal migration, assuring the public that the Public Affairs Unit of the Command, would continue to sensitize them on the dangers associated with irregular migration and the right way to travel.