Posted on March 08, 2019 by Ilias Kiritsis
New Zealand Maritime authorities have detained the Panama-flagged bulk carrier, Daiwan Justice, after complaints that the crews' wages hadn’t been paid over the last four months.
Responding to a tip from the International Transport Workers’ Federation, the bulk carrier was detained by officers of Maritime New Zealand on Saturday the 2nd of March in Lyttelton.
A maritime officer went onboard the carrier in order to investigate the claims. Having interviewed the ship’s Master and crew, the officer found evidence that the crew's wages hadn't been paid in a while.
When confronted, the Master admitted that the wages had not been paid. Following the admission, the maritime officer proceeded to detain the vessel.
The vessel’s operator is the Taiwan-based company, Wisdom Marine International Limited.
It’s not the first time that Wisdom Marine has had one of its ship’s detained for withholding crew wages.
Last year, the Daiwan Fortune, another Wisdom Marine International vessel, was detained under the same conditions.
Maritime NZ Southern Regional Compliance Manager, Michael Vredenburg said that they are in the process of deciding what compliance actions should be taken against the company.
“We acted on information provided to us by the International Transport Workers’ Federation. Maritime NZ applies maritime law irrespective of the ‘flag’ of the ship and the nationality of the crew,” said Vredenburgh in a statement.
Maritime NZ originally detained the ship under the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC 2006) that sets minimum standards for the health, safety and welfare of seafarers, one of which is employment.
Information on the detention of the Daiwan Fortune has been shared with the maritime authorities of other Asia-Pacific countries as part of the Tokyo MOU.
Following the detainment, Wisdom Marine proceeded to pay the crew’s wages and Daiwan Justice was once again allowed to depart.