Dirco travel Burkina Faso


Burkina Faso kidnapping: Dirco share four essential safety tips for South Africans

Dirco has moved to remind South Africans how to properly prepare for overseas travel, after one of our own was kidnapped in Burkina Faso.

Dirco travel Burkina Faso


The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) have issued safety advice to South African travellers after one of our citizens was kidnapped in Burkina Faso.

What we know about the Burkina Faso kidnapping so far

As AFP report, an Indian and a South African were among three mine workers taken from a northern part of the country, which has been repeatedly targeted by jihadists.

The kidnapping was confirmed by a fellow mine worker who said the three men “left the site (of the mine) around 8:00, and by 10:00, they had no more news of them”. Dirco responded to the incident and stated they are working with the country to secure the worker’s safe release.

“The South African Government has been informed of the kidnapping of a South African national in Burkina Faso. The Government through the Missions in that region is working with law enforcement agencies to attend to the situation. The family of the affected South African has been informed.”

In the meantime, the department wants travellers to remain vigilant and stay smart when it comes to choosing where they are visiting next:

Research your destination

Whether it’s for business or pleasure, you still have to find out if where you’re going is safe. Burkina Faso has a history of jihadist kidnappings, and foreigners make for prime targets.

Back in January 2016, another group kidnapped Australian Kenneth Elliot and his wife Jocelyn, both in their eighties, in Djibo. Jocelyn was released but her husband, who had been working in the country for decades, is still being held. Before you agree to go anywhere, research the political situation. [AFP]

Find out about a country’s security concerns

Different countries come with different challenges. For example, kidnappings are more frequent in Burkina Faso than in a country like Yemen, but Yemen is a nation being ravaged by war. It’s important to find out what exactly the biggest threats are within the borders of your chosen destination.

It may be from the British government, but their travel advice tool is pretty useful in this case.

Find the contact details of your nearest mission

If you do get in a spot of bother abroad, don’t leave yourself in the dark. Get the contact details of the South African Consulate stored in a safe place, or in the memory banks of your phone. Dirco provides an easy-to-use database of where these missions can be contacted.

Register with Dirco before travelling

Very few South Africans are aware that it’s a requirement to register your travel plans with Dirco before you leave the country. Otherwise, getting help from back home when you’re in a sticky situation becomes a lot more difficult.

The registration process is relatively simple. You visit the Dirco website, which gives travellers some much-needed advice about taking care when overseas. On that same page, there’s a link to Rosa. Click on it, enter some personal information and contact details, then you’re all done and dusted.