Fish trawlers carrying cash on board attract pirate attacks – AMES President


The president of Association of Marine Engineers and Surveyors (AMES), Mr Charles Uwadia, has warned that pirate attacks on fish trawlers plying Nigerian waters would persist as long as some of them who are in the habit of carrying cash on board of their trawlers do not stop the practice.

It would be recalled that fish trawlers operators have cried out against incessant pirate attacks and foreign dominance as some of the challenges that have stifled their business.

However, Mr Uwadia blamed incessant pirate attacks on the hard currencies which they put on board and which attracts the marauding attackers.

Uwadia, who lamented high level of insecurity in the country, admonished fish trawler operators on the need to stop the practice in order to starve off the attacks.

He maintained that if the attackers discover there is no longer cash on board their boats, they would be less susceptible to ferocious attacks.

The AMES boss wondered why trawler operators would carry cash on board while at the sea even when they had enough bunker, water, food and all other things they need.

However, our correspondent gathered that most of the operators sell their catch while at sea which explains the source of the cash on board.

“I know there is a lot of insecurity out there, especially as it affects the ship trawlers’, continue Uwadia.

“What I am saying is that pirates attack the fish trawlers at sea out there because they know they have money on board at any point in time because as they are catching, they are selling, so they have money.

“Basically, when they come most of the time, it is the money they are after that they know is on board, they too have to look inwards to see how they can stop carrying money on board and if there is no money on board, it will not be attractive for the pirates to attack.

“Why do you have money on board on this our water?

“A trawler is going to sea for instance, you are going to be there for 45 days, and you are given your 45 days bunker.

“You are given your 45 days water, you are given your 45 days food, you are given everything it takes, there is communication between you and the vessel.

“You are less than 200 nautical miles and then you are in contact with your office every day, so, why do you need money on board? Are you going to buy diesel outside.

“The main target of the attackers is the money because the people are busy selling fish, and as they are selling, they are making money,’’ he said.

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