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Boat Mishap At Ikot Abasi River .11 Persons Drowned, 3 Missing

Three unidentified persons out of eleven passengers in a speed boat lost their lives last Sunday November, 6, 2011 during a boat mishap along Ikot Abasi/Kono River.
The speed boat was conveying the passengers most of whom were traveling back to Port Harcourt through Kono waterside after attending burial ceremonies at Ikot Abasi only to be involved in the incident.
According to an eye-witness account, the boat was said to have developed fault as it refused to start.
“As the driver was struggling with the engine at the UAC Beach, the tide was moving the boat already loaded, into the mid-sea, and as soon as the engine picked up with force, the boat turned the passengers upside down into the water,” he stated.
“It took rescuers long time to arrange for another boat to rescue some of them who tried to swim for safety before they were assisted by the good people, who are believed to be divers, thereby saving eight lives.
A female passenger who was a victim and wants to remain anonymous, said that the driver was supposed to transfer the passengers into another boat or provide them with life jackets for safety, but the boat driver did not heed their plea, just as the speedly water carried the boat off the shore into the mid-river.
When contacted to know the efforts of the Marine Police whose office is at the beach near the place of the incident, the officer in charge was not present but an insider said “If the parents of the missing passengers wanted a police search they would be requested to provide fuel and mobilize the police to search for the missing persons. But the boat driver had come to narrate and made statements about the incident. Two of the survivors have also come to give their statements”, he said.
None of the missing passengers has been recovered before going to the process. ###

Senibo A. Atagbara

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