Tanzania says over 40 killed in Lake Victoria ferry capsize

2018-09-20 21:21
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More than 40 people died on Thursday when a ferry capsized in the south of Victoria, Africa's largest lake, a Tanzanian government spokesperson said.

"According to reports that President John Magufuli has just received from the authorities in Mwanza, the toll now stands at more than 40 dead," Gerson Msigwa, the president's spokesperson said on state television.

The MV Nyerere ferry sank with an unknown number of passengers on Thursday afternoon near Ukara Island, according to Tanzania's Electrical, Mechanical and Services Agency.

"There were more than a hundred passengers on board when the ferry sank, it is feared that a significant number have lost their lives," said George Nyamaha, the head of Ukerewe district council.

The ferry was also carrying cargo when it capsized close to the dock.

The cause of the accident was not immediately clear, but overloading is frequently found to blame.

Six years ago, 144 people died or disappeared when an overloaded ferry sank off the semi-autonomous Tanzanian island of Zanzibar.

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Read more on:    tanzania  |  east africa

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