150 people missing as passenger boat sinks

Posted by News Express | 18 April 2019 | 919 times

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•Kivu Lake, DRC. (Photo by: Hermes Images/AGF/UIG via Getty Images)

As many as 150 people are missing after a passenger boat sank on Lake Kivu in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, President Felix Tshisekedi said.

The disaster happened Monday evening, but details of the incident were only just emerging Wednesday.

President Tshisekedi said he was “very saddened” by the news and extended his condolences to the families of the missing.

“I am very saddened by the shipwreck of a pirogue on (Monday) April 15 on Lake Kivu. The provisional toll is 150 people missing,” Tshisekedi said on his official Twitter account.

Vital Muhini, national Deputy from South Kivu province told CNN on Wednesday that 37 people have been rescued so far and three bodies were recovered from the site of the sinking.

Fatal boat accidents frequently occur along waterways in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, on the Congo River and on the country’s lakes, where water is a primary means of transport for residents outside its major cities.

The country sacked its transport minister after a string of accidents along its waterways in 2011 in a move to tighten safety issues in the sector.

More than 100 people were declared missing after two boats collided on the Congo River in 2015, according to the World Health Organization.

The agency said passenger boats often sink in the country due to the age of the vessels and their failure to follow rules of navigation.

Source: News Express

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