Pirates Attack Speed Boat …Humiliate Passengers

Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd) (middle), with Comptroller, Western Marine, Mr Yusuf Umar (left) and a stakeholder, during the Comptroller General’s courtesy visit to Western Marine Command, Lagos, recently.

Dare devil armed men
suspected to be sea pirates attacked a Port Harcourt bound speed boat from Bonny and stripped the passengers naked and jettisoned them at a mangrove.
A source told The Tide correspondent in Port Harcourt yesterday that the incident occurred on last Friday at about 7.00am along Dutch Island,  in Okrika local government area.
The source further said six armed men in a speed boat armed with sophisticated guns attacked the passenger boat with 20 persons on board and asked all the passengers to close their eyes, during which they ordered the occupants, both men and women to strip naked and collected their belongings including cloths, money and cell phones.
The Tide source learnt that after the gruesome incident, the suspected sea pirates dropped all the passengers at a nearby mangrove and sped away with the boat.
It was gathered that the stranded passengers were rescued by the next boat coming from Bonny as they asked the boat operator to phone their members in Port Harcourt for a rescue mission.
The Tide source said the Executives and members of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) Bonny unit in Port Harcourt have to  source for fund and purchased cloths and sent to the victims before they were given to the jetty  in Port Harcourt where they were a men transport fares to go to their various homes.
When contacted in his office at Bonny Waterside, Port Harcourt, the Beach Master, Bonny Marine Transport Association, Comrade Henry Jumbo confirmed the incident and said it was a nightmare although no casualty was recorded.
Jumbo reiterated his appeal to the government to station some JTF gun-boats at strategic positions on the sea route to Bonny and other riverine communities to forestall further occurrences.
The Beach Master also disclosed that recently, a Finima community son, Isoboye Iwo Brown was also kidnapped along the Dutch Island axis of the sea route but was released after all alleged ransomed was paid,  stressing that the sea route was becoming a hot zone for sea travelers reiterating that urgent steps should be taken to ameliorate the ugly situation.


Collins Barasimeye