DENPASAR ~ The captain of a passenger vessel that sank off Nusa Penida killing at least nine people has told police that on the day the ship sank he had arranged for an unqualified substitute to skipper the ship.
Dewa Nyoman Raka, 52, of Klungkung, told Bali Water Police he did not captain the Putra Romo when it sank on August 26. Nine people are confirmed dead, at least two are still missing and 13 people were taken to hospital after the accident.
Instead, Raka had arranged for I Kadek Geria (37) to skipper the vessel, knowing that Geria did not have an authorised proficiency certificate (SKK) or a sailing licence (SIB), according to police.
Raka said Geria had often acted as his substitute.
Inquiries into the sinking are at internal investigation level at present. Both Raka and Geria men have been ordered to report to the Nusa Penida Harbourmaster.
Water Police said the Putra Romo probably was unseaworthy and its survivability in rough seas would have been reduced without a qualified skipper in command.