Members of the United Seamen and Ports Workers Union of Liberia say they are now traumatized and are working under fear due to the constant and mysterious deaths of their colleagues over the period on high sea.
“Since the Government give the Chinese Company license to operate on Liberian waters about three to four months ago,five of our members have died and we are worried” said the Vice President of the Union Freeman Gueh.
The latest call is in reference to the death of Cyrus King, age 31 who died on Saturday on high sea while carrying out his normal activities.
The group who is not pointing accusing fingers at anyone for the death of their member (Cyrus) but is requesting the satellite cameras which usually captures all activities on board the vessel to play the tape in order to find out what really killed their member, noting whether it was as a result of the natural cause or any foul play in the process, they just want to know, added Mr. Freeman.
Speaking to reporters Wednesday the President of the Union Samuel Siafa alleged that the Captain of the vessel is refusing to play the tape something he claimed raises eyebrows.
According to him the cameras on board the vessel normally run on a twenty-four hour basic and is sophisticated to capture all activities and wonders why they are refusing to allegedly play the tape to know what really transpired.
He explained that on one occasion, one of his members stole a fish on board the vessel and was captured and proven by the camera after playing the tape but questioned why they are not doing same.
At the same time the Vice President of the Group Freeman Gueh is calling for complete fair play into the investigation.
He wants national government to see the need to protect its workforce at all times adding by demanding the release of the tape to be play.
“Let the police and national government do the right thing for its people”, Gueh, added.
Currently only one Chinese company he noted has been given license to operate on Liberian waters something he think is responsible for the manner and form in which his members are being treated.
“If the Tape is not played to know exactly what killed our member”, We will advise ourselves, Gueh in an angry tune said.
Meanwhile one of the members on board the vessel Eugene Seekie allege that they have been ill-treated by the Chinese over the period but no one to speak for them as they have no choice but to continue working just to help sustain their families.
“We are normally insulted, slapped, kicked and many others by the Chinese while working but we cannot do anything, Eugene Allege.
He narrated that he saw blood oxen from the neck, eye and other body parts of his colleague (Cyrus) when he was taken from the fishing net on Saturday, though he is not accusing anyone but also joined his voice to that of his bosses calling for the tape to be played to find out what led to his friend’s death, because he too is very much afraid.
The situation has now instilled fear in members of the Union as they are calling for proper intervention from relevant authorities of government to help protect them.
When contacted via mobile an official of the Trans Ocean Maritime Fishing Agency Alfred Lame denied any claim of mal- handling of the Union’s members neither are they refusing to play the tape, though he did not say exactly when and where will the tape be played.
He subsequently referred kmtv to the Homicide division of the Liberia National police for further inquiry but we were told that the situation is still under investigation.