The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has called for the immediate release of 17 dockworkers arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
In a press statement signed by the President General of the Union, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju, the union decried that the arrest and continued detention of 13 Dockworkers and crew by NDLEA since the 13th of October, 2021.
He said the workers were reportedly arrested while on duty on board MV Cha Yaree Naree which berthed at the Green View Development Nigeria Limited Terminal on which narcotics were said to be found.
Adeyanju however said there was no information that the drugs were found on the workers.
He said the poor workers who were neither the Ship Agent nor the consignee of the vessel were arrested and kept incarcerated by the NDLEA since October 13th 2021 till date, without being released or charged to Court as would have been done in line with Rule of Law.
“Surprisingly, the poor workers who were neither the Ship Agent nor the consignee of the vessel were arrested and kept incarcerated by the NDLEA since October 13th 2021 till date, without being released or charged to Court as would have been done in line with the tenet of the Rule of Law.
“Similarly, the Union is also informed that on Sunday 7th of November, 2021 another four (4) Dockworkers who were on duty on board MV Kartena were arrested by the NDLEA operatives for a bag said to have been found in the Vessel, the content of which was not disclosed.
“Again, this bag that is found with undisclosed content was not found on any of the innocent workers arrested and kept in detention for days without being released and charged to court. Their cell phones were also sand to have been arrested by the NDLEA operatives.”.
The union lamented that, “Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria is worried as its members seem to be targeted for arrest, whilst the ship Agent and the Consignee who are in possession of the Ship manifest are not even interrogated let alone arrested.
“Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria is not in any way in support of either the importation or peddling of hard drugs into the country, but frown at the continued harassment, intimidation, arrest and detention of our members who have been kept incommunicado for over two weeks without being released or charged to court. This is not in tandem with global best practices” the union stated.
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