NIMSID Urges Seafarers To Check The Financial Status Shipping Companies Before Engagement.

The Nigerian Maritime Society In Diaspora (NIMSID) the umbrella body of Nigerian maritime professionals in diaspora has expressed deep worries by what it called- the obvious ill treatment and hash conditions face by some seafarers in the hands of their employers.It consequently cautioned intending seafarers to be careful why signing any contract of engagement with any shipping company,According to the body,   “as we speak that over 100 Indian seafarers and other nationalities are stranded in UAE waters and their distress calls are on the rise”.The NIMSID added that, Indian and other missions have been approached by 97 seafarers from 22 ships abandoned in the region about lack of pay, lack of food and water and harsh living conditions, even as it said that the Indian Consul General has also confirmed increasing rate of distress calls from seafarers.“An unknown number of seafarers from Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Myanmar and Pakistan are also stranded on the vessels”, it added.“The consulate has been making arrangements to provide them food, water and recharge their mobile phones”. According to the group, the plight of these seafarers is indicative of the fact that employers take advantage of seafarers. “This explains why we are urging our seafarers to check the financial status and credibility of companies before joining them”The news comes after recent reports of a number of stranded vessels including the Sharjah Moon docked at Hamriyah Port in Sharjah in the UAE. The vessel, with six Indian crew members and one Sri Lankan crew member has been stranded since July 2016. Those on board are owed at least eight months' pay”, the NIMSID noted.“It’s understandable that there is the rush especially for cadets seeking for sea term, but one just need to be careful to avoid unpleasant experience”, it advised.