resumption of the maritime link between Dakar and Ziguinchor, a relief for Casamance

resumption of the maritime link between Dakar and Ziguinchor a

In Senegal, after ten months of shutdown, the maritime link between Dakar and Ziguinchor, in Casamance, in the south of the country, resumed on Tuesday April 9 evening. The rotations were stopped the day after the violent riots in early June triggered by the arrest of the then opposition leader, Ousmane Sonko, further isolating Casamance from the rest of the country. From now on, return trips will resume twice a week.

2 mins

With our correspondent in Dakar, Léa-Lisa Westerhoff

Final ticket check before boarding. In single file, everyone clutches their bag or shopping bag on their shoulder, while “ Good evening, welcome aboard » burst forth. Nearly ten months after her last boat trip, a young mother holding her son by the hand feels relieved: “ We were really tired from the road. It’s difficult to travel, especially with a child. The boat makes our job easier “. Yaya Balde, originally from Casamancein the south of Senegal, abounds, the boat connection is crucial. “ I was impatiently waiting for this moment, because it is a way to help the populations of the south to carry out their activitieshe savors. Trade is very complicated by road “.

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Ziguinchor, 450 km to the south, its mangoes and cashew nuts are only connected to Dakar by a long and very bad road, Casamance, the agricultural heart of the country, also being very landlocked. For Nafissatou too, the boat is therefore crucial. “ It is less expensive “, she sums up, laconic. Seven euros per seat, 18 euros per cabin and the possibility of storing up to 220 tonnes of freight, this is what the connection offers. This sports teacher, who is preparing to join his family in Casamance, is delighted at the end of an injustice. “ Only the boat can push the economy of Casamance. Because the goods it can hold, cars can’t take it. And the price is more affordable by boat. It was unfair to end the affair, really. »

In total, 280 passengers from Dakar will arrive around 10 a.m. this morning in Casamance. They will be able to make the return trip twice a week. A second boat, which carries up to 400 tonnes of freight, is also expected to return to service in the coming weeks.