July 15, 2024
MARITIME: Twelve Nigerians caught hiding on board of Chinese bulker to China
MARITIME: Accidents drop 6.3% to 311 cases in four months
– By Godswill Odiong

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By Our Correspondent
Twelve Nigerian stowaways have been caught hiding on board a Chinese bulk carrier OPHELIA, according FleetMon.

It stated: “12 Nigerian stowaways had to escape from Chinese bulk carrier OPHELIA on Sep 10 or 11, when the ship was sailing along Liberian coast, en route from Lagos to Orinoco Venezuela. There were 14 of them, who sneaked and hided on board, 2 as they claimed, were killed by Chinese crew, after the crew found stowaways, the rest jumped into water or were thrown overboard – details and the whole story are contradictory, insufficient and rather muddy.

“Six stowaways swam to the shore and alerted, or were taken to, Joint Security Task Force in Grand Kru, Chris Teah, other 6 were rescued by Joint Security Task Force under, again, unclear circumstances.

“Ship’s AIS is off since Sep 9. Of course, it is not clear if all happened as stowaways put it – 12 helpless and peaceful guys have been treated well for some time, then later suddenly, crew became hostile, poured boiling water on them (?) and so on.
“More likely is another version – stowaways weren’t all that friendly and peaceful, and attacked the crew, demanding something – probably they didn’t like ship’s destination and wanted the ship to sail to Europe, who knows? Or even more probably, the ship was to call Liberian nearest port, or turn back to Nigeria, to disembark unwanted passengers (according to Liberian authorities, bulk carrier was sailing very close to the shore, for some time), and of course, stowaways didn’t want it.”

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