At least four passengers have been confirmed dead and 12 others including children missing from the ill-fated boat that capsized while ferrying passengers from Mile 12 to Ibeshe axis of Ojo Local Government to Mile 12 area of Lagos State.
It learnt that the boat mishap happened when the passenger boat hit a stationary barge along the Mile 2 waterways and emptied the passengers into the ocean.
As of the time of filing this report a joint search and rescue team from Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), National Inland Waterways (NIWA) Nigerian Marine Police and the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) were currently combing the waters body to rescue survivors and recover more bodies.
It would be recalled that two female passengers also died on Wednesday when a 20-seater boat which departed Ipakodo ferry terminal in Ikorodu capsized.
The General Manager of Lagos State Waterways Authority, Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, while commenting on the tragic occurrence said the boat capsized almost immediately after take-off.
According to him, 15 occupants of the capsized boat were rescued alive.
The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) in their joint statement on the current mishap confirmed that, “At about 7.45 today the 8th of July 2022, The National Inland Waterways Authority and Lagos State waterways authority received a distress call of an incident on the waterways.
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“The Boat going from Mile 2 to Ibeshe in Ojo axis broke the waterways rules of late travelling by setting sail at 7.45pm. As he set out, the tide of the water drifted the boat to a stationary barge which caused the boat to overturn. It is said that all passengers on board including children were not all putting on their life jackets”.
“The Search and Rescue team of the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), National Inland Waterways (NIWA) Nigerian Marine Police and the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) were immediately mobilized to the scene of the incident but unfortunately could only find the boat after several hours while efforts are still ongoing to locate the victims.
“The boat is currently in the custody of Marine Police. The Boat Captain is also unaccounted for as at the time of this press release”, the agencies said.