Sea robbers yesterday attacked a Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO), Sendje Berge with explosives some 30 nautical miles southwest from Bonny Island, kidnapping 11 of its crew members. According a United Kingdom-based security firm, Dryad Global, which cited a ‘high confidence’ report, 11 crew members of the FPSO were suspected of being kidnapped.
The incident was confirmed by BW Offshore, the owner of the FPSO. It was learnt that Sendje Berge was at the Okwori field in Nigeria on contract to Addax Petroleum when the thieves struck in the early hours of yesterday. The company noted that both the manner of attack and target were beyond the usual targeting and attack methodology of pirate action groups within Nigeria.
It said: “On 2 July 2020, at approximately 4:20 a.m. local time, BW Offshore’s FPSO, Sendje Berge was subject to an attack by robbers offshore Nigeria in which nine Nigerian nationals were kidnapped. The incident onboard the FPSO has ended and none of those remaining onboard have suffered physical injuries.” The company added that it was cooperating with the local authorities, represented on site by the Nigerian Navy. Dryad Global report indicated that explosives were used during the attack.
It added: “This latest attack brings the total number of kidnapped personal in maritime incidents within West Africa to 74 in 2020. Kidnap reporting within 2020 is currently tracking at 51 per cent higher than that of 2019 across the same time period.”