Witness’ memory faded

National

A FEMALE survivor of the Rabaul Queen ferry disaster admits her recollection of the disaster has become more faded with time and she can only recall “important facts”.
Joelyn Lole was the sixth witness to be called in court yesterday in Kokopo.
On trial are ferry owner Peter Sharp and captain Anthony Tsiau, both facing 172 counts of manslaughter, and sending and taking an unseaworthy vessel out to sea.
Since the trial resumed on Thursday, witnesses, including Lole cross examined by the Sharp’s lawyer David Cooper, were asked to properly recall issues such as whether life jackets were accessible, weather conditions, and the height and magnitude of the three big waves that capsized the ferry.
Lole continued giving evidence yesterday on the fourth day of this session of the trial at the Kokopo National Court.
She was asked what time exactly she boarded the ship at Kimbe wharf, but Lole said she did not know because she was only mindful of the departure time which was at 2pm on Feb 1, 2012.
Cooper told Lole that her recollection of what happened over the past two days was not very clear.
“I can only recall important facts and not unnecessary things,” she confidently replied.
Lole was shown a document that contained instructions on how to use a life jacket and was asked if she saw this posted on the walls of the ship in the decks.
Lole said she did not see it as there were too many passengers on board.
“Before you came to court, did anybody tell you to say there was no life jacket on board?” Cooper asked.
Lole told the court: “No.”
The trial continues today.
Maritime expert Dr Martin Renilson from Australia has been confirmed to give evidence.
The ferry sank off Finschhafen, Morobe, on Feb 2, 2012.
In that disaster, 172 people, including women and children, were killed.

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