Operatives of the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) NWAMBA have foiled attempt by pirates to hijack a British merchant vessel, MT VECTIS OSPREY.
The operatives while responding to a distress call at about 20 nautical miles offshore of Bonny, were said to have engaged the pirates who were about boarding the vessel.
It was gathered that the ship’s crew had sent a distressed call to Naval Regional Maritime Awareness Centre (RMAC) through the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), noting the service of pirates attack.
Consequently, NNS NWAMBA was deployed to the scene, where it engaged the pirates in a gunduel forcing them to flee.
Confirming the rescue, the Director, Naval Information, Commodore Chris Ezekobe it occurred on Wednesday, adding that the navy’s Special Forces boarded the vessel and rescued the crew members who locked themselves in a citadel.
“The crew and cargo of MT VECTIS OSPREY are safe while investigation has also commenced in order to unravel the circumstances of the attempted hijack, especially with regards to the current trend of involvement of crew members in attacks on their own vessels.
“Ship owners are hereby advised to profile their crew before embarking them onboard to avoid situations in which some disgruntled crew members stage-manage attacks on their own vessels.
“The Chief of the Naval Staff Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas is poised to eliminate all forms of criminal activities in the maritime domain, hence several initiatives have been made in this regard,” he said.
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