#15 Kenyan fishers forced to work under gunpoint on Somali vessel
NAIROBI, Kenya – A distress signal sent out by fifteen Kenyan fishermen, on Thursday, alleged that they were currently being held forcefully in a Somalia fishing vessel.
Details released by the Daily Nation claimed that the victims were forced to work at gunpoint, with no payment, whatsoever.
East Africa International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITWF) officer, Betty Makena, disclosed that she was the one who received their first SOS signal.
“The fishermen got my contact from some of their colleagues who they interact with and sent me the details and the pictures on their sufferings. Majority of them are sick and they need urgent medical attention,” she divulged to the Daily Nation.
Reports further revealed that the fishermen were currently serving in a vessel named FV Marwan, operating deep within Somali waters.
Makena noted that the stranded Kenyans had been recruited by Seaport Operations Limited on April 16, 2019, in Mombasa, before being shipped off to the coast of Somalia.
She added that the gory pictures she had received gave evidence of their deplorable working conditions, in which they were forced to sleep out in the open.
The fishermen’s cry for help also allegedly claimed that their employer was forcing them to work for long hours, with any slackers or trouble makers threatened with a gun.
Makena passed on the desperate message of the 15 fishermen pleading to be safely brought back home to the media.
The latest incident involving Somalia comes at a time when the two neighboring states are involved in an international case, revolving around maritime border issues.