At least 106 people have died and 144 rescued from the Monday Boat mishap which claimed many lives in the Patigi local government area of Kwara state.
This was contained in a statement signed by SP Ajayi Okasanmi Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) and made available to the press on Wednesday.
The boat which capsized between Ebu and Dzakan village in Patigi local government was carrying about 250 passengers
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“Among the casualties were people from Ebu Village with 61 casualties, Dzakan Village with 38, Kpada Village with 4 dead, and three (3) other casualties from Kogi State, putting the total number of casualties at 106 and the total number of rescued people at about 144,”the statement read.
“Information was received by the Divisional Police Officer of Patigi Divisional Headquarters to the effect that a boat accident occurred around the River Niger axis.
“The Commissioner of Police Kwara State, CP Paul Odama psc+, immediately after receiving the information dispatched a team of policemen to join the policemen and other locals already on their way to locate the exact spot the boat accident happened to join in the rescue efforts.
“The boat was said to have conveyed about 250 people from a village called Gboti via Patigi after a wedding ceremony to Ebu Village and Dzakan Village, all within Patigi’s local government area.
Investogist gathered that the boat capsized following the failure of the side engine where water had penetrated.
President Bola Tinubu said he is “deeply saddened by the news of the tragic boat accident that claimed the lives of our people in Kwara State. That the victims were guests at a wedding ceremony made the unfortunate accident more painful.
“My heartfelt sympathy and condolences to the families and friends of victims of the tragic mishap. I also sympathise with the government and people of Kwara State over the accident. May all loved ones find comfort,” the President prayed,” he added.
He urged the Kwara State Government and relevant Federal Government agencies to look into the circumstances surrounding the boat accident.
Tinubu promised that his administration would look into the challenges of inland water transportation in the country to ensure the matter of safety and operational standards are strictly adhered to.
Ifunanya Ikueze is an Engineer, Safety Professional, Writer, Investor, Entrepreneur and Educator.