The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arraigned 26
suspected pirates alongside a company, Sam Pam Nigeria Limited, and a
vessel, MV Neso II, before Justice Mohammed Liman of the federal high
court in Ikoyi.
The suspects were arraigned on two counts bordering on illegal dealing
in petroleum products.
Despite the abolition of the controversial safe anchorage area by the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, where vessels and crew members wait before they proceed to berths, shipping companies still pay $2,000 per day to operators of the area.
Speaking Vanguard Maritime Report at a maritime stakeholders meeting in Lagos last week, Mr. Mark Wash, Executive Director, ENL Consortium, operators of berth A, B and C at the Apapa port, confirmed that NPA has told shipping firms to stop paying for protection at the ‘safe anchorage’.
In a bid to keep the Nigerian waterways safe from robbers, the National Inland Waterways Authority, NIWA, Lagos Area office, recently, destroyed shanties on Lagos channels around Iddo waterfront to secure the area for navigation.
The exercise followed petitions and reports of criminal activities and presence of suspected pirates who hide in the shanties where they plan and launch attacks against legal occupants of waterfront facilities as well as take down boats and vessels transporting goods across the channel.
In a bid to secure oil and gas operations as well as fishery activities in the Gulf of Guinea, countries in the region have agreed to set up an expert working team that would implement resolutions reached at the just concluded Gobal Maritime Security Conference, GMSC, held in Abuja, last week.
Disclosing this to newsmen at the end of the conference, Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, said that the team will be established within the next three months.
In a ruling issued Monday, the High Court of London ruled that the tanker Brillante Virtuoso was irreparably damaged not by pirates, as her owner and banker claimed, but by a group of conspirators. Justice Nigel Teare found that the owner’s claims of piracy were improbable, and he reached the “firm conclusion” that the attackers intended to destroy the vessel, that they had the assistance of the master and chief engineer as they went about the task, and that the owner orchestrated the scheme in order to defraud his insurer.
On July 6, 2011, Brillante Virtuoso was drifting off Aden, awaiting a team of unarmed security contractors before transiting Bab el-Mandeb. A small boat approached carrying seven masked, armed men. The men informed the crew that they were “security,” and they came aboard with the master’s permission. (The disputants in the case agreed that the boarding party’s members were likely current or former Yemeni Coast Guard or Navy servicemenbers.) They ordered the crew to the day room, and escorted the master to the bridge and the chief engineer to the engine room.
AT the backdrop of high incidences of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea, GoG, coterminous with Nigeria’s continental shelf, the Indian maritime authority has warned its seafarers to steer clear of Nigerian waters for fear of falling victims.
Disclosing this at the just concluded World Maritime celebration in Lagos, Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Senibo Peterside said that NIMASA was currently working on the development with a view to assuaging the fears of the Indian authorities.
More than 24 hours after daredevil gunmen suspected to be Sea pirates
at about noon on Thursday hijacked two boats along Port Harcourt-Bonny
route, the Rivers State Police Command is yet to comment on the
whereabouts of about 24 passengers who were taken into unknown
destinations in the mangroves.
Curiously too, the Rivers Government has also not reacted to to hijack and eventual disappearance of the 24 passengers.