HomeWorld NewsTwo men miraculously survive after 29 days adrift at sea

Two men miraculously survive after 29 days adrift at sea

According to The Guardian, on September 9, Livae Nanjikana and Junior Qoloni departed from Mono, to the west of Solomon islands, on a small boat powered by a 60HP engine.

The two planned to go 200 kilometers to the south to arrive in the town of Noro on the island of New Georgia. They decided the directions by sailing by the west coast of the Vella Lavella and Gizo islands.

Mr. Najikana said that they had completed the same voyage before and things should have been fine. However experienced one might be, the Solomon sea separated by the Solomon Islands and the neighboring country Papua New Guinea is very hard to maneuver. Only some hours into the journey, they encountered big winds and rains which hindered their sight of the coasts, so they couldn’t see the direction.

Credit: Frans Ruiter | Unsplash
Credit: Frans Ruiter | Unsplash

“When the bad weather found us, it was bad, but what’s worse was when our GPS device was broken,” he said “We didn’t know where we’re going. So, we decided to stop the engine and wait to save the fuel.”

They had been afloat on the sea for 29 days, living on the oranges they had prepared before the sail, coconuts adrift, and rainwater accumulating in a plastic cover. Their boat had been adrift 400 kilometers from the shore for almost the whole month. Eventually, they are luckily saved by a fisherman in the New Britain sea, Papua New Guinea.

Credit: Johannes Plenio | Unsplash
Credit: Johannes Plenio | Unsplash

Nanjikana said: “We didn’t know where we were but never expected we were in another country.”

When rescued on October 2, the two were too weak to lift themselves up, so people had to help carry them out of the boat and took them to a house nearby. They were taken care of in the Pomio town, Papua New Guinea, and are living in the house of a local.

Nanjikana shared that he sees positive things about this experience one of which was getting out of the chaos of the global pandemic.

“I didn’t know what’s happening when I was at sea. I didn’t have to hear bad news about the Covid-19 pandemic or anything else,” he said. “I hope I will come home. I hope it is a great time after all.”

Mrs. Mary Walenenea, Senior Desk Officer of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Solomon islands, said they are contacting Nanjikana in an attempt of securing necessary agreements before getting the two men home.

Credit: Daniel Gregoire | Unsplash
Credit: Daniel Gregoire | Unsplash

To the north of Mono island where the two started their journey is Bougainville, Papua New Guinea. Last July, a boat carrying the manager of the Medical Ministry of Bougainville, Mr. Charry Napto, his wife, his son, and other 4 people were lost when the sea went turbulent. There was only one found.

Weeks earlier, another boat also went missing in Bougainville when carrying 13 passengers. The Bougainville Sherif Francis Tokura, said the government is considering banning boat travels when the weather turns bad.

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Alex Wilsonhttp://chinhhunky.com
“With freedom, flowers, books, and the moon, who could not be perfectly happy?” ― Oscar Wilde, De Profundis
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