Nigerian Stowayways Who Survived 14 Days on Ship’s Rudder Rescued in Brazil

Four stowaways rode a cargo ship across the huge Atlantic Ocean for ten days, hanging from a tiny spot above the rudder.

The courageous journey spanned 5,600 kilometers (3,500 miles) and unfolded in perilous weather that tested their fortitude.

Their ordeal began when the brave quartet embarked on the perilous journey in search of a better life distant from their hometown.

However, their pursuit took an unexpected turn when they ran out of food and drink only ten days into their perilous journey.

The brave four resorted to extreme measures, sucking seawater from the waves that crashed just meters below them. Their determination and sheer grit enabled them to face four more days of torture on the open sea.

The four’s predicament drew the attention of Brazilian federal police patrolling the southeastern port of Vitoria, who rescued them from the unforgiving ocean.

The perilous trip of these four migrants highlights the risks that some migrants are willing to endure in exchange for a better life.

“It was a terrible experience for me,” said 38-year-old Thankgod Opemipo Matthew Yeye, one of the four Nigerians, in an interview at a Sao Paulo church shelter. “On board, it is not easy. I was shaking, so scared. But I’m here.” The reuters quoted in a report

Their relief at being rescued soon gave way to surprise.

The four men said they had hoped to reach Europe and were shocked to learn they had in fact landed on the other side of the Atlantic, in Brazil.


Two of the men have now been returned to Nigeria at their request, while Yeye and Roman Ebimene Friday, all 35, from Bayelsa state, have sought asylum in Brazil.

Both men said that economic difficulties, political instability, and crime had forced them to flee their native Nigeria. The most populous country in Africa has a long history of violence and poverty, and kidnappings are common.

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