Rivers police, maritime workers launch search for 11 missing boat passengers
The Bonny-Nembe-Bille Jetty in Port Harcourt is a major take off point for most people travelling to riverine communities across the State.
The Police and maritime workers said they have begun search for 11 passengers who went missing after the boat they boarded from the Bonny—Bille jetty in Port Harcourt was allegedly hijacked by suspected pirates.
Chairman of the Bonny Maritime Union Workers, Henry Jumbo who confirmed the incident in Port Harcourt on Wednesday said the boat left the state capital about 8am, but that no word have been heard from the travelers and the boat driver ever since.
Jumbo stated, “Our boat that left Port Harcourt yesterday to Bonny with 11 passengers and the driver have been apprehended by unknown gunmen. We have not seen the boat, the driver and the 11 passengers since then.”
He however said a search team have been launched for the missing passenger boat and its occupants.
“A search team have gone round the whole bushes and creeks till night and this morning with the help of another gunboat. They are still in the bush (creek) searching for the passengers and the driver. Please let the government should come to our aide,” he said.
Jumbo said the water transport business have suffered a huge blow due to incessant attacks on the waterways. The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, Bonny chapter are suffering.
“We have lost our customers. We have been losing our boats, everything, our business because of gunmen and sea pirates. Let the government help us to recuse these passengers, the driver and the boat,” he added
When contacted, spokesman of the state police command, Nnamdi Omoni confirmed the incident. He said the police have Launched an investigation to unravel the circumstance surrounding the disappearance of the 11 passengers.