Photo: The capsized boat
Over 100 wedding guests die in boat mishap
No fewer than 100 people have died in a boat mishap in Egbu village of Pategi Local Government Area of Kwara state.
The deceased persons, who took off from Kpada village, were said to be returning from a marriage ceremony in neighbouring Egboti village, when the incident occurred.
Over 100 bodies were recovered from the scene of the incident.
The entire community has been thrown into a mourning mood.
Sources said that the tempest from the river tossed the boat around, making it to hit a tree before it capsised.
At least 300 passengers were said to be aboard the ill-fated boat.
A breakdown of victims indicated that 69 were from Egbu village; 36 from Gakpan village and 4 from Kpada village in the Patigi local government area of the state.
Confirming the incident, Ajayi Okasanmi, the police spokesperson, Kwara State command, said that the command had dispatched the Divisional Police Officer of the local government to the scene of the accident.
He said, “There is a scanty report of a boat that capsized carrying about 100 people in a village in Pategi local government area of the state; I will give you more details on the incident as soon as I get more information.”
Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara while reacting to the mishap expressed dismay over the sad news.
A statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Rafiu Ajakaye, on Tuesday, the governor commiserated with families of the victims and members of the community where the incident occurred.
He expressed deep sadness over the unfortunate incident, which claimed scores of lives.
“The Governor is sad to receive reports of the boat accident involving several people, particularly residents of Ebu, Dzakan, Kpada, Kuchalu, and Sampi — all in Patigi.
“The Governor sends his heartfelt condolences to the people of these communities and those from other states. He prays to Almighty Allah to repose the souls of the victims.
The statement added that the governor will continue to monitor ongoing rescue efforts, hoping that there will be some survivors.
He added, “The Governor, meanwhile, continues to monitor the rescue efforts already mounted since Monday night in search of possible survivors.
Speaking further, Abdulrazaq commended the traditional leader of the community and local authorities for their promptness in launching rescue operations.
“He commends the alertness of the Etsu Patigi, His Royal Highness Alhaji Ibrahim Umar Bologi II, and other local government authorities for the efforts to save as many people as possible who may have survived the mishap”, the statement added.