A total of 10 crew members have been abandoned onboard the Tanzanian-flagged general cargo ship MV Jinan in the Kenyan port of Mombasa, since October 2019.
he MV Jinan arrived in Mombasa in September 2019, where the 17 crew members were told to stay and await order, reports by BusinessInsider reveal. Some weeks later, it was understood that the owner abandoned the ship, leaving the crew without pay or any means of subsistence.
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Over the months, seven of the 17 crew left, as their families pulled together the cost of airfare. Ten remaining crew members waited it out. The 10 are all Surian crew members, so they cannot enter Kenya without a visa, and are more than 6,000 miles from home.
The Mission to Seafarers has supported the seafarers onboard MV Jinan with foodstuff, water, fuel, and cooking gas. Speaking on the case earlier in 2021, port chaplain Reverend Muli said:
We thought the matter was going to be settled soon after the court ruled in their favour, but actually the process of selling the ship is taking longer that we had anticipated. This has been the most challenging experience I have ever encountered since I joined the mission.
As of late April 2021, the IMO database on seafarers’ abandonment listed 198 vessels. In some cases, the crew was repatriated but never received their full wages. In others, mariners are still on board, waiting for a change.
In a high-profile case unveiled recently, chief officer Mohammad Aisha lived for four years alone onboard the MV Aman, which was detained at the Suez anchorage in Egypt in July 2017 and was abandoned following safety failures. Aisha was finally allowed to leave on April 22, when the Aman was sold.
Find an ILO database on ship’s’ abandonment here.