Twenty Persons Feared Dead as Fleeing IDPs Drown in Sokoto Boat Accident
A boat accident has claimed the lives of no fewer than 20 persons in Sokoto State when a boat carrying internally displaced persons capsized.
At least 20 persons were killed in the boat accident, which occurred in Gandi District of Rabah Local Government Area, Sokoto State.
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) reported that the vessel, which was carrying 50 passengers overturned in strong currents in a river; only 29 people were lucky to escape the carnage.
According to Suleiman Karim, a NEMA staff, “Rescue teams recovered the bodies of 17 women and four children on board the overloaded boat which capsized due to strong waves,”
The passengers were heading to Garin Kare village on the other side of the river to check on their homes, which they had deserted following deadly raids last month by suspected cattle rustlers on neighbouring villages in the area.
Thousands of the villagers had fled to a makeshift camp in Gandi town after the bandits’ attack that killed 32 people and burnt dozens of homes.
The Sokoto state Governor Aminu Tambuwal through a statement issued by his media aide Abubakar Shekarau has commiserated with the families of the victims of the boat mishap, praying for the speedy recovery of the survivors.
“Governor Tambuwal prays for the repose of the souls of those who died in the accident and quick recovery of survivors, with the hope that the people of Gandi would regard the calamities as trials from Allah. He prayed that they would be granted the fortitude to bear with the loss of loved ones.” The statement read.
Governor Tambuwal noted that the mishap came at a time when Sokoto State was still grieving the killing of 40 people by armed bandits in the area.
Remote parts of Sokoto state has been at the mercy of armed bandits as well as cattle rustlers who have forced villagers to flee from their homes in their thousands afraid that what happened in Zamfara was also taking place in Sokoto.