Nigeria: Boat mishap claims 6, dozen missing, 60 rescued
By RAZAQ BAMIDELE
Not less than six persons have been confirmed dead while about 12 others were still missing in a boat mishap in Kebbi State, northwestern zone of the country according to official statement.
A spokesman for the state government, Abubakar Dakingari, said in a statement on Wednesday said that the incident occurred when two canoes collided late Tuesday on the River Niger, the longest river from which the country derived its name.
“Two canoes were carrying more than 78 passengers, six persons have been confirmed dead while 12 are still missing and over 60 were rescued,” Dakingari disclosed.
The State Emergency Management Agency head, Dodo Sani also confirmed the incident to our cirrespondent.
“As at this morning, six persons have been confirmed dead while search continued for the remaining 12. Also, 60 persons were rescued alive by emergency responders and local divers. Further updates will be communicated,” Sani added.
Boat disasters are very rampant in many riverine areas of Nigeria and the incessant occurrences are blamed by experts partly on operators not adhering to safety rules such as embargo on night travels and wearing of safety jackets.
Last September, 53 people were said to have been confirmed dead in a boat mishap on the same river.