Home International news Two Sao Tome fishermen lost in Atlantic ocean rescued in Bayelsa

Two Sao Tome fishermen lost in Atlantic ocean rescued in Bayelsa

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By  Daniels Igoni

Two fishermen identified as Antonio Sabino and Osorio Pires from Neves in the SaôTomē and Principe were on Sunday rescued in Brass Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, Southern Nigeria, five days after they got lost in the Atlantic Ocean.

The Portuguese-speaking fishermen were said to have been rescued by a trawler fishing around the Gulf of Guinea and handed over to some fishermen from Okpoama-Brass who ferried them ashore.

The Sao Tomeans were thereafter taken to the Okpoama Divisional Police Headquarters and received by the officer in charge, Ebimiesigha Bebetu, a Chief Superintendent of Police.

The chairman of the Okpoama Kingdom Security Committee, Munalayefa William-Sinte said the fishermen looked malnourished but they were fed and clothed before handover to the police.

According to him, the fishermen were visibly afraid but were assured of their safety with sign language before the police took custody of them.

William-Sinte also said that a fisherman from Ilaje in Ondo State but a resident in Okpoama had been missing for over a week, adding that his colleagues have been searching the ocean for him for days now.

The Bayelsa State Police Command has confirmed the rescue of the two Sao Tome and Principe fishermen some 50 nautical miles off the Atlantic Ocean on July 2, 2023.

A statement issued by the spokesman for the command, Asinim Butswat, on Monday, said the Divisional Police Officer, Okpoama Division, took custody of them.

It said, “The two fishermen, Antonio Sabino ‘m’ 52 years and Osorio Pires ‘m’ 41 years from Neves in SaôTomē and Principe got lost in the Atlantic Ocean for five days before being rescued by a Captain of a fishing trawler.

“The Police authorities have established contact with a coastguard officer from Saô Tomē and Principe and are making a concerted effort to reunite them with their family.”

It would be recalled that in 2019, the decomposing bodies of two male fishermen were found in a fishing boat that drifted ashore in Okpoama from Saọ̄ Tomē and Principe.

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