Bali boat accident: Family seeks answers after Eastern Cape farmer, Brazilian wife dies

It was meant to be the final day of their two-week vacation to Bali for Despatch farmer Victor Allers and his Brazilian wife Fatima Turner. But a boat trip near Devil’s Tear cove in Nusa Lembongan island would be their last excursion in Indonesia.

Bali's Search and Rescue Agency told local publication Coconuts Bali that the pair died after a big wave hit their boat causing it to capsize.

The captain of Nagasima-Go, who was taking the two around Nusa Lembongan, was injured but survived. He had reportedly swum to the nearby cliffs and was helped up by residents.

Relative Belinda Coetzee told News24 that their grief was exacerbated as they were unable to get information or answers from Indonesian authorities as to what happened on Monday.

Coetzee said the family had seen a video of the waves and the overturned boat on Instagram.

"They had no life jackets, nothing. They threw a tube to the captain and pulled him out. [The Indonesian government] must be held accountable – this was a tourist thing and their safety should have been of importance," she argued.

Fatima was asthmatic, Coetzee said.

"I don't know whether she had an attack or not as they were apparently swimming and trying to get locals' attention. But no one helped."

An eyewitness who was at the scene however has detailed how they tried to save the couple and the captain after witnessing the boat capsizing.

Bystanders did all they could to help a Despatch couple when they were whipped around in choppy waves before drowning while on holiday in Bali last Monday, one witness said.

"We tried," Luke Scarborough of the UK told News24. "No one could go in or same thing would have happened to them."

UPDATE: 'We tried,' UK tourist says after battle to save SA couple who drowned in Bali

The couple, who each had one child, had been island-hopping in Southeast Asia at the time.

They owned a welding business and a pig farm just outside Despatch, a small town in between Port Elizabeth and Uitenhage in the Eastern Cape.

"We found out about what happened when someone phoned Fatima's secretary. Nobody had phoned my sister, Victor's mother."

The family was in contact with the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco), Coetzee said.

The couple had been retrieved from the water by a passing boat but had already been unconscious, Coconuts Bali reported. They were declared dead at a local community health centre.

Dirco spokesperson Clayson Monyela said the department was aware of the boat accident in which Allers and his wife died.

"His next-of-kin have been informed of his death and Dirco is rendering the necessary consular assistance to his family."

* This story has been updated to include comment from an eyewitness.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Show Comments ()
Voting Booth
Do you think the wardens deployed across Gauteng will make a dent in curbing crime?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
No, proper policing is needed
80% - 2673 votes
Yes, anything will help at this point
20% - 670 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.