Monday, April 22, 2024

Absconded Cruise Ship crew guarantors ordered to pay $50,000 each or face property forfeiture

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By: Dawda Baldeh

The High Court has ordered over fourteen individuals, who acted as guarantors for crew members who absconded from the Cruise Ship Crew Gambia, to pay a fine of $50,000 each or face the possibility of property forfeiture.

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These crew members who secured contracts to work on different cruise ships globally reportedly abandoned their ships upon arriving at their destinations.

The agency called this act a breach of contract agreement and took the matter to court as both parties had agreed to the contract terms and conditions.

In Banjul, Justice Ebrima Jaiteh delivered a judgment ordering the guarantors of the absconded cruise ship crew members to forfeit bonds totalling US$50,000 to the Cruise Ship Crew of Gambia.

Gambia’s Cruise Ship Crew lawyer, Badou S. Conteh, led the lawsuit involving guarantors who were taken to court.

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Kaddy Comma from Bakau and Bintou Comma from Bafuloto guaranteed Jerreh Njie, who absconded upon arrival in the United States. Amat Njie from Kunkujang Ketaya and Nyang Sallah from New Yundum were guarantors for Awa Njie, who also absconded. Modou Lamin Jabang, Baboucar Kebe, and Seray Jabang from Pirang guaranteed Bunama Jabang. Aishatou Jarra from Brufut was the guarantor for Lamin Manneh. Salifu Joof from Brufut and Yankuba Badjie guaranteed Ebrima Joof. Manyima Jatta from Sanyang and Mariama Jatta from Brufut stood for Sanna Bojang, and Amadou Jallow from Tujereng was the guarantor for Burrie Njie. Bakary Saidykhan and Lamin Saidykhan guaranteed Musa Saidykhan. All these individuals were recruited by Cruise Ship Crew, Gambia, and absconded after arriving in the US.

According to the court ruling, if the guarantors fail to pay the US50,000 for each of the absconded persons, the guarantors stand to lose properties.

Reacting to the court ruling, Musa Drammeh, the Director of Operations at Cruise Ship Crew Gambia said all crew members are given five-year visas upon getting contracts.

Drammeh questioned why young people would want to abscond after having valid visas to work and renew their contracts.

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“Each crew member has a five-year visa and why should they abscond? This absconding has led to visa rejection for hundreds of young people who should have been given the opportunity,” he said.

He further revealed that the agency’s primary goal is to create job opportunities for young people and mitigate the risk of embarking on the perilous journey.

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