Acting Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Mr Haruna Jauro, has directed that the abducted captain and four crew members of a Polish cargo vessel be rescued immediately.
The directive is contained in a statement issued by Hajia Lami Tumaka Head of Public Relations Department in NIMASA and made available to newsmen on Saturday in Lagos.
The statement also stated that the director-general had ordered full scale investigation into the abduction.
It said that the 11 other crew members were left on the vessel after their colleagues were abducted.
The statement read, “The vessel MV SZAFIR operating under Cyprus flag was reportedly attacked on Friday, November 27, approximately seven nautical miles East of Brass at about 01.49 hours local time.
“Registered with IMO No.9004504, the vessel, owned by Voltaire Shipping Company and operated by Euro-Africa Services Nigeria Ltd. had a total of 16 crew members, was enroute Onne Port from Antwerp.
“The vessel which has been rescued by NIMASA is currently sailing to Onne port under the Nigerian Navy escort for protection and further investigation,’’ the statement said.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Navy and other security agencies have commenced a search for the abducted crew with a view to freeing them and bringing the perpetrators of the abduction to book.
By Patrick Aigbokhan