The Management of the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has commiserated with the people of Kebbi state over the boat mishap involving 17 passengers heading to Yauri market in Kebbi State.
According to NIWA, preliminary investigation shows that the wooden boat capsized as a result of heavy windstorms that accompanied the bad weather.
NIWA says the sad and avoidable incident occurred on Monday 2nd October 2023 due to human error where the sailor ignored the weather conditions that were turbulent.
“Despite several efforts in sensitization campaign on safety and training of Boat operators in Yauri in particular and other parts of the country, we still continue to record such boat mishaps due to negligence of the boat operators to NIWA safety guidelines.
“The Authority will continue its training and sensitization campaign to prevent the occurrence of such incidents in the future.
“May God Almighty grant the families of the victims the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss of their loved ones and may the souls of the departed rest in peace.”
A statement from the organisation reads: “Whereas the sailor was supposed to berth at the nearest bank of the river which is NIWA safety guidelines for such weather conditions, he decided to continue the journey thus making the passengers panic and some of them jumped into the water without wearing life jackets and later the boat capsized.
“NIWA rescue team in Yauri Area Office where the incident happened, were involved in the rescue operation with other agencies. Nine persons were rescued alive and Eight dead bodies were retrieved.