Pirates kidnap five off southern Nigeria: police

Warri - Sea pirates have kidnapped five people from a ship off the coast of oil-rich southern Nigeria, police and maritime security analysts said on Thursday.

The incident happened on Monday night near Parrot Island, south of the Cross River state capital, Calabar.

"Information so far at our disposal is that the hoodlums came in four speedboats, attacked the vessel and abducted five men aboard," a senior police officer told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Dirk Steffen, a maritime security specialist at Risk Intelligence, added: "The vessel in question is the Cameroon-flagged general cargo ship Donna Simop.

"Information available to us suggests that four Cameroonian crew members and a Nigerian passenger were kidnapped," he said in an email exchange.

Another maritime security consultancy, Sea Guardian, corroborated the attack. The Nigerian navy was not immediately available to comment.

Ship hijackings have become more frequent in Nigeria since President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015 announced he was winding down an amnesty to former militants in the oil-rich Niger delta region.

The number of pirate attacks off Nigeria rose from 14 in 2015 to 36 last year, according to the International Maritime Bureau.

Buhari's government has since resumed amnesty payments, causing a fall in rebel attacks on oil and gas infrastructure, but piracy is a constant threat in the Gulf of Guinea.

In February, seven Russian sailors and a Ukrainian national were kidnapped. They were rescued unhurt weeks later in March.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Matric results are out! Are you happy with your child's result?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
No, the pandemic really messed up their ability to focus
34% - 856 votes
Yes, they did well given the circumstances
66% - 1642 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
15.48
-1.0%
Rand - Pound
20.72
-0.3%
Rand - Euro
17.25
-0.0%
Rand - Aus dollar
10.89
+0.2%
Rand - Yen
0.13
-0.3%
Gold
1,794.84
-1.3%
Silver
22.70
-3.4%
Palladium
2,376.00
+1.8%
Platinum
1,024.00
-1.0%
Brent Crude
89.96
+2.0%
Top 40
67,070
-0.4%
All Share
73,504
-0.4%
Resource 10
75,094
-0.2%
Industrial 25
90,477
-1.1%
Financial 15
15,064
+0.9%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE