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How A Brave Nigerian Man Drowned After Saving His Brother’s Life In The Mediterranean Sea

nigerians drown Mediterranean sea

March 24, 2016 – How A Brave Nigerian Man Rescued His Junior Brother & Drowned In The Mediterranean Sea Enroute To Italy

This a story that would send minds racing, an agonising tale that would leave everyone contemplating what it feels like to be seconds away from death.

A man has told Daily Sun how his brother perished in the Mediterranean Sea, as two of them journeyed illegally to Europe in a rickety boat.

The two brothers from Edo State – Monday and Osas Amanmien – had embarked on the deadly voyage across the angry Mediterranean Sea, intent on hitting Italy where they hoped to make a better living. But the trip turned sour midway, leaving Monday dead. He drowned in the sea following a boat wreck.

Although Osas miraculously survived the disaster, he had to endure one hellish hour, hopelessly floating on an empty keg and being brutally buffeted by the bullish, restless waves. And now, he lives with the eternal trauma of the last words of his brother. Monday had said, in a desperate tone: “My keg dey leak ooo,” before he finally went down.

Osas says his brother drowned so that he might live. He recalled that when it became obvious that the boat was destined to go down, Monday summoned courage and seized two empty water kegs beside him. One was good, the other was bad. He gave his younger one the better keg so that he would be afloat and live while he struggled with the bad keg. He eventually drowned, Osas said. Not even his dead body was retrieved.

Both brothers, who hailed from Benin, had joined the bandwagon of African migrants des­perately trooping to Europe to escape the harsh economic realities at home.
Monday and Osas had left Benin one morn­ing, and embarked on the trip to Europe. The two brothers, alongside others, were on the road. They travelled through Sokoto up to Nia­mey, Agades and Duruku in Niger Republic, enduring the grilling, sahel weather. Finally they landed in Tripoli, the Libyan capital. And from there, they boarded a dingy, overloaded speedboat headed for Italy. But they had the expansive Mediterranean Sea to contend with.

nigerians drown Mediterranean sea

The reporter learnt that before the brothers launched out on the sea journey, they were for weeks holed up in a Libyan ghetto, a camp for travellers. They could not set sail for Italy be­cause they were told that the sea was rough, a development that could make their boat to capsize.

All the same, all the travellers in the camp, including Osas and Monday, were excited. They were further delighted when they were told by their agents that they could embark on the journey and that the sea was no longer furious.

On the said day, Monday and Osas were to be ferried by agents who operated the ‘Gha­na Poli Two.’ The migrants paid their agents several thousands of Libyan Dinars, which, when converted, was about N170, 000 as their transport fare to Italy. As usual, hundreds of migrants fleeing Africa were in the number. They boarded the large boat and said fervent prayers for safety at sea.
Everything was calm as they set sail. With Europe on their minds, everyone was confi­dent of the good life that lay ahead.

Everyone began growing in confidence. Then midway into the journey, every prediction crumbled like a pack of cards. Soon, the unthinkable happened just as they were about to celebrate their successful entry into Italian waters. The boat developed a fault. Then a big crack ma­terialised right at a very important part of the boat. It began to let in water, first in small quantities and then in very massive propor­tions. Before the jubilant migrants could re­alise what was amiss, sea water had penetrated and overpowered the hapless craft. Then it began to sink. Fear gripped everyone. Danger and death stared everyone in the face as the end drew near.

At that point, everyone burst out into prayers. Everyone began to pray in various tongues. But that seemed useless. With the waves lashing unrelentingly at the sinking boat, death and disaster appeared a touching distance away. Confusion and uncertainty set in. In no time, the water overshadowed the boat, leaving the migrants at the mercy of the deep, blue sea.
There was no rescue team in sight. To make matter worse, Osas and Monday could not swim. Those that could swim were able to sus­pend and sustain themselves on the water for close to an hour before help finally came.

Monday had quickly grabbed two empty jerry cans he found beside him. He handed one to Osas and held one to serve as lifeline. But unfortunately, the one that Monday had began to let in water.
The reporter was told that Monday deliber­ately held on to the bad one at his own risk; he wanted his younger brother saved. But in a matter of minutes, the brave Monday went down the sea and drowned. His terrified broth­er cried out to his brother. But he was gone, never to be seen again.
Many others in the boat also suffered the same fate with Monday. For those who could swim at least, Providence smiled on them when the Italian rescue team showed up and came to their rescue. They were taken to a refugee camp near Napoli in Italy.

Recalling the ugly tale from Italy recently, Osas told the reporter: “That was actually the first time my late brother and I travelled on wa­ter. It was about 8:00am Libyan time. We were sailing to Italy on the Mediterranean Sea. The weather was bright and everything appeared very much okay. Though we were somehow afraid, there were no signs of danger before us.

“The boat was moving very fast. Our minds were actually filled with various thoughts. Some were happy and singing, while others were calm. My brother and I belonged to the group that was calm. But I had this strange feeling which l could not tell.
“The sea was blue and nothing was before and behind us. The only thing I could see was a point that looked like where the sky was touching the sea. Anytime I looked at the sea, I was always scared, but my brother sensed it and he tried to calm me.

“Sitting next to me, his presence was like a pillar of strength to me. Anytime l looked at his face, it gave me the hope that I was not alone in the journey. Later on, the weather changed and became very cold. I quietly asked myself what pushed me to embark on
such journey. At that point, so many other thoughts began racing through my mind.
“Then suddenly, someone shouted: “Hey! We are already in Italian territory!” We all started shouting and thanking God. We had barely finished that before the unexpected be­gan to happen.

“The boat was carrying many passengers. It suddenly stopped on its own. We tried all we could to re-start it to no avail. At that point, my elder brother drew my attention to a
spot where the boat was leaking and from where water had started coming in. We began to pray in loud voices, but the water was now rushing in with full force. We tried to block the leakage with some plastics materials we found, but the more we did, the more damage it seemed we were doing to the boat.

“Not too long after, I saw our boat going down. I saw death coming closer and closer. My strength was gone.
“Then the worst happened; the boat finally went down and left us at sea. ‘Where is my brother?’ I screamed with the little strength left in me. And gently, he touched me from behind and said ‘no fear, I dey here.’

“He handed over an empty keg to me and told me to hold firmly to it, that it would pre­vent me from sinking. I did as he instructed me.
“He was also holding firmly to one. After a while, the whole place was calm and quiet. It was just few of us left on top of the water. Many of the passengers had drowned. With a gentle voice, my elder brother called me and said, “my gallon dey leak ooo.” He meant that water was coming into the keg.

At the time he informed me, he was already going down. But he assured me that nothing would happen to me, that I should hold on to my keg. I looked at him with tears in my eyes; his keg was already filled with water. He struggled to remain on the sea, but he had no strength left any longer.

The third time I looked out for him, he was no longer there.
“He was nowhere to be found. He intention­ally gave me the good keg and took the bad one so that l wouldn’t get drowned. It was af­ter an hour later that a rescue team came and picked the rest of us left into its boat and we were moved to somewhere around Napoli, Italy. That was how my brother saved me with his life.

“But was the journey really worth it? Think twice before embarking on this type of jour­ney, because you might not be as lucky as I was.”

[Reported By Job Osazuwa Daily Sun]



  1. Rita Sheddy

    March 24, 2016 at 6:09 AM

    I wept while reading this,all I have to say is Lord why all this? May anybody that finds himself or herself in same situation be saved or not even embark into such journey in Jesus name, Amen

  2. Sesan Israel

    March 24, 2016 at 6:36 AM

    heartbreaking story

  3. Maryf

    March 24, 2016 at 6:57 AM

    Sacrifice for one you love. Monday sacrificed his life for his brother to live. This was how Jesus the son of God sacrificed himself for the whole world to live. May his good and gentle soul RIP and others who also lost their life. Such a tragic story!

  4. olaizo

    March 24, 2016 at 7:18 AM

    This could be turn into a film and not Nollywood oo coz they wont interprets it well., If people can watch this as a film, i believe they will have 2nd thought as not to embark on such trip…its too deadly, rating it will be like 2% to 98% .
    The sea owns the larger percentage…even the flight is risk, anybody who fly frequently will understand what am saying not to talk of traveling on a Keg or one useless boat…Rest n peace brother…

  5. Tee

    March 24, 2016 at 8:18 AM

    My heart is heavy reading this story, see how our unpatriotic politicians are destroying our young generations, they loot and stash money abroad instead of providing employment and good infrastructure for the nation. i will say to the youths, there is nothing in abroad even Europeans now want to get rid of as many foreigners as possible, so don’t embark on this perilous journey, find something else to do get into agriculture there is big opportunity there, it may not be fanciful but at least you can live with dignity and feed your self and family, abroad no easy oo, Rip to the deceased

  6. Precious

    March 24, 2016 at 8:22 AM

    very very heartbreaking. am filled with shock

  7. asake

    March 24, 2016 at 8:44 AM

    tears!! cant just hold d tears…touched story..

  8. fifelomo

    March 24, 2016 at 8:50 AM

    What a heartbreaking story, only the wicked will read this and not shed tears. Rip Monday, you are indeed a brave heart.

  9. Amazon

    March 24, 2016 at 9:07 AM

    #crying# with tears in my eyes I pray that God grants your brother eternal rest in His bosom Amen

  10. Jojo

    March 24, 2016 at 9:14 AM

    Heartbreaking but why Edo state all the time.

  11. Metu Nyetu

    March 24, 2016 at 9:14 AM

    The poverty level of this country is hard to ascertain because the country is so rich but the people are desperately poor. I put the blood of these men and whoever had died crossing the Mediterranean Sea on the heads of all our corrupt leaders.

    Thus, there will always be the drive to leave for greener pastures, defying all odd elements. I in no way justify this trip. When we sit down to count the risk, we may finally conclude that it does not worth it. It could be termed bravery in a sense: after all not many people can endure those unfavourable conditions of the journey.

    But is another sense, this is utmost cowardice. You flee your country because of joblessness; you could not throw away your pride to do menial/casual jobs. Yet when you get to that foreign land, you embrace what you had rejected here with all your heart. What are we doing to ourselves? Is it better to be a slave in another man’s land?

    I feel for those lost souls. But wake me up any day anytime and I would tell you that it is not worth it. Let me stay here and tackle my problems head-on in my own little, but resolute way. I MUST succeed in this country without hurting anybody: without duping a man or shedding his blood, or using any other vice of evil. That, to me, is utmost bravery.

  12. sola olaniyi

    March 24, 2016 at 9:21 AM


  13. chic

    March 24, 2016 at 10:13 AM

    oh! tears rolling from my eyes uncontrollably. May his soul rest in peace.

  14. Olanrewaju

    March 24, 2016 at 10:37 AM

    They embark on a dangerous journey,illegal journey perhaps. Anyway rip to the deceased

  15. Omevwe(I am)

    March 24, 2016 at 11:40 AM

    Thanks @ Rita Sheddy,your prayers & calm words has calmed my nerves.GOD save hustler around d world.

  16. Iyke Togo

    March 24, 2016 at 11:55 AM

    I can’t control my feeling when reading the horrorful story, I cried for the brotherly love and support that showed in such a critical condition I carried. May almighty God accept the soul of Monday and other victims.
    Nowhere country is good to live for greener pasture, what we needs in our life to succeed is GOD grace PLEASE AFRICAN SAY NO TO STONEWAY is deadly and unbearable. life is precious that ever.

  17. james

    March 24, 2016 at 12:03 PM

    I could not finish this story because of tears,i wounder, i wounder why there is silent at the grace yard of a poor citizen of the so called Fedreal Repulic of Nigeria,not at war as other countries, butat war with herself, a country that look the death of an odniary citizen as a rat death, no regard to them cause they are have no name or their names are fillied with scares, rest in peace comarade, yes you are in the belly of the ocean, but you are not forgoten in the eyes of the owner of the seas and ocean, just continue to rest, you will soon come out when the lord will size its power and bring out those who are hold by it, brother you will be out, you will be out,,,,, audio.
    To his brother, never forgeot why you are there, never forgot the death and sacrifies your brother made on your behalf,work hader any time you remember him.

  18. figer

    March 24, 2016 at 3:21 PM

    What I can say is dat bcos of how hard dis country is, a lot of pipo have decided to embark on a dangerous journeys and businesses. Success is a matter of life and death in nigeria, if they succeed their level changes, if they r out of luck, they perish.

  19. Goodnews

    March 24, 2016 at 4:43 PM

    May the soul of Monday find solace in the bosom of the almighty God. My hrt is feel of sorrow for u.s. I wept and shed my tears for u.s. We will meet in the resurrection many. Adieu ooooooooooooo till we meet to part no more. Rope dear soul

  20. my lady

    March 24, 2016 at 9:29 PM


  21. Sunny

    March 24, 2016 at 10:47 PM

    Wow, so painful

  22. Dayo

    April 2, 2016 at 5:07 PM

    There was a time I commented on a similar post on this site, I don’t care what response people will give to what am about to write, but Nigerian Government is a waste!!! I live in Italy, and Nigerians rank the highest number among africans that come through the sea; they keep dying and eventually when they land Italy, they have nothing to do, just yesterday here, on a programme, they showed large number of black immigrants literally living under the trees, and these bastards that make up the government keep embezzling money, making life hard for an average man…. Shame on them, and eventually these guys that come through the sea, get to beg at supermarket and on the road for as little as 50cents.. GOD GO PUNISH EVERY EMBEZZLER IN NAIJA!!Plus, the act is destroying the image of Nigerians.. I wish they will just stop endangering their lives, I mean its not worth it, no job in Italy, sleeping under the trees, italian farmers take advantage of them and use them as slaves for their farming…. Really my heart aches, I wish God just kill all these old fools that are making life unbearable for people. GOD PUNISH ALL OF THEM WITHOUT MERCY!! AWON OLE!!!!

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