Suspected Nigerian pirates have raided a Ghanaian-owned fishing vessel off the coast of Keta in the Volta Region of Ghana and taken hostage three crewmembers.
The pirates, said to be nine in number, took hostage the captain, chief officer and chief engineer of the vessel who are all Korean nationals.
TV3’s Josephine Antwi- Adjei reported a while ago that the Korean ambassador to Ghana is currently at the Tema Fishing Harbour to get first hand information on their national, and to see how they can establish contact with the pirates.
Two Ghanaian crewmembers who were tortured have since Wednesday evening been sent to the Maritime Hospital in Tema for treatment, Josephine reported from the Tema Fishing Habour.
Owners of the vessel, World Maritime Company, confirmed the incident took place at approximately 5:20pm on Monday, 26th March, 2018 while the vessel, registered AFT28, was sailing to bait grounds to fish for anchovies.Officials of the Ghana Navy told journalists the pirates hijacked the vessel for 12 hours and took it to Togo territorial waters where it was retrieved from and brought to Ghana on Wednesday.
The pirates were said to have used a speedboat to approach the vessel.
Nothing was stolen from the vessel, the Navy officials said.
There were 40 crewmembers on the fishing vessel, which has since Wednesday evening berthed at the Tema Fishing Harbour, our correspondent reported.“The Ghana Navy has taken over the vessel and investigation is underway”, our correspondent said.
Flag officer for the Eastern Naval Command of the Ghana Navy, James O. Kontohthey told journalists they suspect the pirates will demand ransom from their captives. Owners of the vessel say they got information about the hijack of their vessel from another vessel, which was also operating within the area when the incident occurred.
The matter was immediately reported to the Ghana Navy which swiftly moved in.
By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana
Editor’s note: This is a developing story and 3news.com will keep updating readers as and when new information comes in.