At least 17 dead in Nigeria boat capsize

Kano - At least 17 people drowned when a boat ferrying around 60 passengers capsized in northwest Nigeria, the National Emergency Management (NEMA) said on Wednesday.

The boat smashed into a tree trunk in the rain-swollen River Niger on Tuesday.

"So far 17 bodies have been removed from the water, 12 yesterday (Tuesday) and another five this morning", NEMA coordinator Suleiman Karim told AFP.

Another 17 passengers were rescued by emergency workers and local divers, Karim said.

"We are still searching for at least 26 people because the 60-passenger boat was full at the time of the accident", he said.

The number on board may have been higher as ferries in the riverine region are usually overloaded, Karim said.

The boat had left Jilbabo village in Kebbi state and was heading to Tetebo village in neighbouring Niger state in central Nigeria when the accident happened.

Capsizes are a frequent occurence in Nigeria, where overcrowding is common and unscrupulous operators flout health and safety norms.

The accident rate typically rises in the May-September rainy season when rivers swell.

Last month 74 people were killed in three separate boat capsizes in northern Nigeria, according to emergency services.

In one instance 56 people drowned when an overloaded boat sank carrying 150 passengers in Kebbi state.

The boat was ferrying local traders from neighbouring Niger Republic to a market in Nigeria.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you 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.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Would you choose to continue working from home after the coronavirus lockdown if given the option?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, it's much better for me
40% - 7924 votes
No ways! I can't wait to get back to the office
12% - 2301 votes
A mixture of both would suit me best
48% - 9603 votes
Vote
USD/ZAR
14.27
(+0.4)
GBP/ZAR
19.63
(+0.6)
EUR/ZAR
17.08
(+0.8)
AUD/ZAR
11.04
(+0.6)
JPY/ZAR
0.13
(+0.6)
Gold
1,766.40
(+0.2)
Silver
25.92
(+0.3)
Platinum
1,196.37
(-0.0)
Brent Crude
66.94
(+0.5)
Palladium
2,738.83
(-0.2)
All Share
68,228
(+0.6)
Top 40
62,444
(+0.6)
Financial 15
12,335
(-0.1)
Industrial 25
88,951
(+0.4)
Resource 10
69,643
(+1.2)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo