New sailors warned to stay away from alcohol and serve with pride


The new sailors after this mornings service

By Lagi Keresoma

APIA, SAMOA – MONDAY 16 APRIL 2018: The new group of Samoan sailors recruited by European cruise and cargo ships have been warned to stay well away from alcohol if they wanted to secure a future in their new careers.

The warning was issued by the Acting Prime Minister, who is also Minister for Public Works Transport and Infrastructure (MWIT), Papalii Niko Lee Hang during the farewell service for the 59 sailors today.

Sixteen of the sailors are new recruits.

“The weakness of some sailors in the past is alcohol and some of them lost the chance to continue their service on these ships,” said Papali’i.

He said once a negative report is produced on any Samoan sailor, his/her service is terminated immediately and will never work again on any ships.

He also pointed out that despite the fewer number of incidents involving alcohol, it is still a serious issue.

Pastor Fa’afetai Fata of the Apia Harvest Centre also emphasised the importance for sailors to follow rules and regulations set down by the company they work for.

“You need to know and understand these rules and be informed that there are no shortcuts in these lines of work,” said Pastor Fata.

“If this was your calling from God, then persevere in ensuring that you reach your goals,” said Pastor Fata.

There are more than 400 Samoa sailors currently working on cruise ships, cargo ships and fishing vessels around the world.

Papali’i acknowledged these sailors contribution of $12 million talā per year through remittances send to their families.

The Italian Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) is recruiting 25 Samoan sailors on one of their new cruise ship’s maiden voyage in June 2018, and 16 from the 25 Samoan sailors are all new recruits.

Out of the new group of 59 sailors, 43 will be working on cruise ships and 16 on cargo ships.

Some of them will depart for their new jobs this month and the rest in May 2018.

A meeting between the Samoa Shipping Service (SS) and parents of the sailors is scheduled for next week, to explain to the parents the issues that they need to understand about the recruitment and conditions on these international employment assignments.