Abu Sayyaf’s former hostage to return to sea

Abu Sayyaf’s former hostage to return to sea

KUALA LUMPUR: Still traumatised by his abduction by Abu Sayyaf in 2016, 48-year old Tayudin Anjut said that he has no choice but to go back to the sea to earn a living.

“I have no choice but to try to forget that harrowing episode and return to sea to earn a living,” said Tayudin, who was one of the five Malaysians abducted by militants from their tugboat in 2016 and held hostage for eight months.

The father of two children, aged seven and 14, has been finding it tough after having to sacrifice his former job at sea after the incident, and later earning very little from a food stall he had set up in Taman Ria in Tawau, Sabah.

His meagre income is now forcing him to rethink his options, and he is now tempted to return to sea as a tugboat crewman once again for the sake of his family.

“I’ll have to consult a doctor first. My legs seem to go numb every time I think of what happened to us (fellow crewmen). After the (kidnapping) incident, I’ve not been to sea at all.

“If all goes well, God willing I will return to the waters after Hari Raya (Aidilfitri)…after all this is the only kind of work, I am good at,” he told Bernama.

On July 18, 2016, Tayudin and four fellow crewmen – Abdul Rahim Summas, Jumadil Rahim, Mohd Ridzuan Ismail and Fandy Bakran – were working on their tugboat Serudong Tiga when they were abducted by the Abu Sayyaf in Dent Haven waters, near Lahad Datu.

All five were eventually rescued by Philippines security forces after being held hostage for eight months.

Recalling the ordeal, Tayudin said they were treated like slaves and forced to cook for their captors, despite only being given food scraps themselves and being threatened with beheadings many times.

Tayudin is extremely grateful for the rescue and the chance to be reunited with his family again.

“All five of us (hostages) are still in close contact with each other, and we have bonded like family. I want to put this nightmarish episode behind me and my focus now is on supporting my family,” he said.

Bernama

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