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Congo boat disaster kills at least 80

Published : Thursday, 13 June, 2024 at 11:52 AM  Count : 304

Congo boat disaster kills at least 80

Congo boat disaster kills at least 80


At least 80 people died after a boat sank in Democratic Republic of Congo, the country's president has said.

The disaster happened on Wednesday on the Kwa River, 70km (44 miles) from the town of Mushie in the province of Maï-Ndombe near the border with neighbouring Congo-Brazzaville, BBC reports.
In a statement on social media, President Félix Tshisekedi said he was "devastated".

The president said those affected would receive help and also ordered an investigation into what caused it.
"The President of the Republic is calling for an investigation into the true causes of this unfortunate incident, to prevent such a disaster from happening again in the future," the presidency said on X, formerly Twitter.

Deadly boat accidents are common in DR Congo, where boats are frequently overcrowded with passengers who are rarely given safety jackets and often cannot swim.

The boat was carrying 271 passengers to Kinshasa when it broke down due to an engine failure, according to the U.N.-backed Radio Okapi, citing Ren Maker, the water commissioner in the Mushi district where the accident happened.

Eighty-six of the passengers died while 185 managed to swim ashore, some 70 kilometers (43 miles) near the closest city of Mushie, Maker said.

He said the boat hit the edge of the river bank and broke up.

Congolese officials have often warned against overloading and vowed to punish those violating safety measures for water transportation. But in remote areas where most passengers come from, many are unable to afford public transport for the few available roads.

SR

Related Topics

Congo   Boat Capsize  








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