A seafarers group, the Merchant Seafarers Association of Nigeria (MSAN) has sent a strong -worded petition letter to the Leadership of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) against Stallionaire Oil & Gas Ltd, owners of MT ADEBOMI 1 for failing to pay their members who worked aboard MT ADEBOMI1 vessel.
In a letter entitled, CALL FOR INTERVENTION IN THE MATTER OF THE UNPAID SALARIES OF CAPT. OGUNSHAKIN WILLIANS AND THE CREW OF MT ADEBOMI1 addressed to the Director-General of NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh, a copy of which was made available to PLATFORM REPORTERS, the group called on the apex maritime regulatory agency to intervene in the matter.
According to the 14-Point letter sent to NIMASA, MSAN stated as follows:
1. We are the Merchant Seafarers Association of Nigeria (SAIL NAVY), a body registered under the laws of Nigeria, by concerned and experienced seafarers and maritime professionals, to advance the cause of, and protect the rights of seafarers and shipping companies and defend the integrity of the maritime profession in Nigeria.
2. We write on behalf our members, Capt. Ogunshakin Willians (Master), Engr. Joseph Dibia (Chief Engineer) and Kolawole Bolakale Issa (Chief Cook), who, having been employed on MT ADEBOMI1 along with other crew members, are being owed five (5) months salaries from December 2018 till May 2019.
3. Capt. Ogunshakin Williams and the crew were variously employed aboard MT ADEBOMI1, by CAMSHIP Limited of 2nd Floor, Ovamann House 1, Shalom Road, Off Ago Palace Road, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos, the crewing agency for Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited of 12a Yeye Olofin Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lekki, Lagos, owners of MT ADEBOMI1.
4. The captain and crew manned the vessel and professionally discharged their duties as assigned and directed by Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited.
5. Sometimes in December 2018, Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited stopped payment of the crew salaries, because of its burnt storage facility that has nothing to do with operating MT ADEBOMI1. The crew stayed on aboard the vessel, working seriously to put the vessel in class because the vessel was not in class at the time, while receiving and carrying out instruction as directed by Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited and CAMPSHIP Limited respectively.
6. To our surprise, we discovered that Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited was paid by the insurance company for the loss they incurred on the burnt storage facility.
7. We also discovered that CAMSHIP Limited had been short-paying the crew of ADEBOMI 1, which is against Maritime Labour Convention and the Merchant Shipping Act, 2007. The Crew taxes were deducted but not remitted.
8. In order for Stallionaire Oil and Gas Ltd not to pay the crew their outstanding salaries, they sent some persons on board MT ADEBOMI1, on Saturday, May 11, 2019, with instructions to take over control of the vessel from Capt. Ogunshakin Williams. The captain handed over the vessel and cheques were issued to the Captain and crew, which turned out to be dudes.
9. Subsequently, Stallionaire Oil and Gas Ltd/Camship Ltd made exerted promises to pay the captain and crew all their outstanding salaries till their last date of disembarkation.
10. However, up till date, Captain Ogunshakin Williams and all the former crew of MT ADEBOMI1 are yet to receive their outstanding salaries and entitlements, in contrast to the promises of Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited and CAMSHIP Limited to settle their salaries and in direct contravention of Section 128(1)(a) and (2) of the Merchant Shipping Act, 2007.
11. It was also recorded that the same crew of MT ADEBOMI1 was attacked by sea pirates during their trip from Port Harcourt. Captain Ogunshakin Williams even had an accident during the operation.
12. It is our uttermost concern that this matter is resolved expeditiously, and the former crew of MT ADEMOBI 1 are paid their outstanding salaries and entitlements. We do not wish for any stand-off between the crew and managements of Stallionaire Oil and gas Limited/CAMSHIP Limited, hence our escalation of this matter to your good office.
13. We therefore pray you Sir, as with Capt. Ogunshakin Williams and former crew of MT MT ADEBOMI1, to call on Stallionaire Oil and Gas Limited/Camship Limited to pay the crew their outstanding salaries and resolve all issues with the crew once and for all.
14. We have attached copies of the following documents, for your attention and in aid of our prayers
1. Employment letters of Capt. Ogunshakin Williams, Engr. Joseph Dibia and Kolawole Bolakale Issa.
2. Email correspondences between the Master, MT ADEBOMI1 and CAMSHIP Limited dated Friday, May 10, 11 and 12 2019, respectively
3. Pictures of the vessel and the crew working to put vessel in class.
4. Picture of the vessel after work.
5. Documents evidencing the insurance company’s payment to Stallionaire Oil and gas Limited the loss incurred on its burnt storage facility.
6. Picture of the vessel, MT ADEBOMI1, when it was attacked by sea pirates.