Seafarers slam alleged mismanagement at Marina

By Niko Baua, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 19 2014 02:55 PM | Updated as of Mar 19 2014 10:55 PM

MANILA – Carrying coffin models, members of the United Filipino Seafarers on Wednesday marched from Kalaw Avenue to the office of the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) on Taft Avenue to protest the alleged mismanagement in the government agency.

UFS president Nelson Ramirez said one of the group's complaints is Marina's failure to supply seaman's books that seafarers need for work and travel.

A seaman's book is a passport-type document that seafarers use to record their sea service days. It is a requirement by the International Maritime Organization.

Marina earlier announced that they will be giving out seafarer's books immediately after its supply shortage is addressed. Marina explained that its supplier of seafarer's books ran out of stock and will be delivering their supplies soon.

Marina has been giving Seafarers Identification Record Sheet (SIRS) in lieu of the seaman's book.

UFS also complained of nepotism within Marina, an attached agency of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), and the long lines for those seeking to obtain their certificates of proficieny (COP).

Marina administrator Maximo Mejia was not in his office during the rally, and could not be reached for comment. – with Noel Alamar, dzMM