KUALA LUMPUR: It was not a hijacking but a labour dispute.
Following a dispute with their employer, the MT Vier Harmoni crew took control of the vessel.
NST Online reported Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) Chief Ahmad Puzi Abdul Kahar as saying that the vessel was not hijacked as previously feared but sailed to Batam, Indonesia.
He said preliminary investigations suggested the drama followed a disagreement between the crew and the ship’s owner.
“MMEA and our Indonesian counterparts worked together in tracking the ship. We were later informed that the ship was safe in Batam.”
Ahmad Puzi said most of the crew were Indonesian.
MMEA is still trying to obtain details of the issue.
It had earlier deployed its assets to search for the ship following fears that it had been hijacked.
It had announced that the ship was feared to have been hijacked off the Kuantan coast.
The vessel was en route to Kemaman, Terengganu, when it deviated from its course. The vessel was carrying 900,000 litres of diesel worth RM1.57 million.