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Thieves on Nosy Komba, Madagascar

By webmaster last modified Aug 22, 2002 05:23 PM

Published: 2002-08-22 17:23:58
Countries: Madagascar

Yacht MIZ MAE was back at Nosy Komba, Madagascar on the 24th of September 2001. Some boats were anchored as usual some 100 meters off the beach. This island only 5 nm east of Nosy Bee offers good fresh water, the Lemurs and a couple of local restaurants. That has always been a good reason to make yachts anchor here in spite of the slightly rolly anchorage.

After a meal ashore we returned to the boat at 08.00 pm to discover thieves had been on board. A thorough check of all gear and wallets brought forward the fact that 720 DM and a box of "Marlboro Light" were stolen.

One could have just left it there, but we felt it was sad, upsetting and not a good memory to take away, so we searched for help at the Hotel "Lemurien", which is run by Martin, an ex German teacher who has owned and operated this restaurant/bar/hotel for many years. got in touch with the "Vice President" of the Island Nosy Komba, who listened to our complaint and promised to look into it next morning. Unfortunately next day nothing happened until the real "President" arrived, who had the skipper sign a statement, mobilized the business people of the village and fully understood the impact on the yachts and tourists concerned.

As it came forward, 4 boats and a lodge were broken into during the past 3 weeks. All of them were observed to go to a restaurant, all of them lost cash and other small things. Not of all of them filed a complaint and it was kept quiet. Unfortunate for us, who would have been more careful.

Now the police are writing reports in French, English and Madagassi and the villagers are upset, but it's still too early to speak of results.

For the moment as a yacht or as a tourist, it is simply safer to stay away from Nosy Komba until the dust has settled. DO NOT leave your boat or dinghy unattended, sail or anchor in reliable company and lock your gear !

Hoping that the good forces may win over the bad, we are leaving the Nosy Bee area bound south along the coast to Mahjunga. We will keep you posted !

Lilly Vedana & Tom Mueller, Yacht MIZMAE

Noonsite has received the following valid comment on this story from someone who has been working in Nosy Be for several years: "Yachts are very tempting to locals, and one shouldn't judge the country by some petty thieving."