Stranded sailors protest [Archives:2007/1021/Local News]

February 1 2007

Nazih Abdullah
For Yemen Times

ADEN, Jan. 30 ) After being stranded in a Church in Aden, for over two weeks without any financial support or way out, 21 Nigerian sailors are still demanding their salaries and airline tickets to return back home. The sailors were working for the Aden Company for Maritime Investment, but they have been locked out of their jobs and taking refuge in Aden's Ra'as Marbet Church because of a dispute with their employer regarding their financial rights. According to one of the sailors, their former employer owes them US$ 95,000 in compensation for their work since August 2006 according to their contracts, but refuses to pay them, and therefore they are protesting the suppressive measures in the Ra'as Marbet church in Aden.

Father Peter Krox, who is the priest in charge of Ra'as Marbet Church, and the representative of the Sailors' International Association said that the sailors' trouble started last August when the company stopped giving them their salaries and their food allowance.

He further maintained that the sailors' attempt to negotiate the matter with the company didn't succeed. “The sailors' negotiations with the Maritime Affairs Authority leadership, represented by Ahmed Mubarak, yielded nothing,” Krox said.

“We negotiated with the owner of the four ships on which the sailors worked many times