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Pregnant woman, son, others die in Niger boat accident

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Pregnant woman, son, others die in Niger boat accident

A pregnant woman, Ramatu Mamman, her two-year-old son, Saminu, and at least seven others have lost their lives after a boat capsized in Niger State.

The victims boarded the boat from Shata Sabo in Shiroro Local Government Area before it capsized midway into their journey to Shata Soho in Bosso Local Government Area claiming nine of its 11 passengers. The incident occurred about 10a.m. on Monday.

Confirming the incident, the Director General of the State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), Alhjai Ahmed Inga, said among those who lost their lives were a mechanic, John Moses, and two of his apprentices, Khalifa Danladi (14) and Ubale Usman (16).

It was learnt that the trio were based at Nangawu community also in Bosso Local Government Area and were going to repair a broken down vehicle when they met their death.

Other passengers in the boat, Inga explained, included Malam Muhammad Safir of Fulani extraction whose age could not be immediately ascertained; Malam Salihu Aliyu, and 72-year-old man simply referred to as Makadi.

The DG said two of the passengers, including the boat’s driver whose identity could not be ascertained, survived the accident but that the driver was in critical condition.

He added that even though the load was beyond the capacity of the small boat, “flood wave was the cause of the accident. They were already on the water when flood waves hit the boat forcing it to capsize”.

Inga said local divers were mobilised to the scene shortly after the accident but only the body of the pregnant Ramatu was recovered with her son, strapped to her back.

He said divers were still searching for the remaining passengers.

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