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Pregnant Woman And 14 Others Die As Boat Capsize In Lagos

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No fewer than 16 persons were feared dead after a 21-passenger boat capsized, on Saturday, in Ijede, Ikorodu Local Government Area, Lagos State.

According to report, the bodies of a pregnant woman and two others have so far been recovered by officials of Lagos State Waterways Authority, LASWA; State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA; Marine Police and other rescue workers.

It was learned that three of the passengers survived after swimming to the shore, where they were rescued by residents. It was also gathered that the high casualties was because none of the passengers was putting on a life jacket. According to report, the driver of the boat was returning from a mechanic workshop, where he had gone to fix the boat when he saw the passengers and after much appeal from the passengers, decided to convey them to Ijede.

Ade Sulaimon, a resident said that one of the survivors, who he identified as Mayowa, alerted the community at about 1a.m. of the mishap. Sulaimon said: “I was asleep when he banged on my door, demanding I wake up. He then narrated what transpired on the waterways to us. Immediately, we set out with the aim to rescue some of the passengers, but the exercise could not yield any result until 9a.m., when we recovered a pregnant woman.” He identified one of the bodies recovered as Alhaji Jamiu Ojikutu and one Chibueze Nwane as missing.

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Chairman, Ijede Local Council Development Area, LCDA, Salisu Jimoh, said from his interactions with one of the survivors, he was told that the boat developed mechanical fault mid-journey and few minutes after it was filled with water. Confirming the mishap, General Manager of LASWA, Damilola Emmanuel, said the accident occurred at about 11: 20p.m. on Saturday.

Damilola explained that the boat left Badore Terminal for Egbin Jetty in Ijede Ikorodu, but capsized midway, minutes after leaving the terminal. He added: “The boat was said to have about 20 passengers onboard at the time. After being hit by several waves, it capsized and emptied all passengers into the lagoon. Three passengers swam to safety, while the others didn’t make it. And at 9a.m. this morning(Sunday) a corpse was pulled out from the lagoon after hours of search.”

Photo Credit: Getty

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