12 die in Niger boat mishaps
At least 12 persons have been confirmed dead in two separate boat mishaps in Shiroro and Borgu local government areas of Niger State.
It was gathered that while incident in Shiroro claimed 10 livee, the one in Borgu claimed two lives.
Both tragedies occurred on Wednesday evening, according to sources within the areas.
An eyewitness, Malam Ibrahim Aliyu told newsmen said that the Shiroro incident occurred when the victims were returning from their farms in Kudumi village, after harvesting some of their agricultural produce.
Aliyu said that 19 persons were on board the canoe, which was also conveying several bags of newly harvested rice and tubers of yam.
He said that the farmers ran into stormy weather, which made the boat to capsize.
The Eye Witness said that local divers that were called upon rescued seven of the farmers alive.
The Director General of the Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA), Alhaji Ibrahim Inga, who confirmed the unfortunate development said the remains of the deceased have been buried while the search for others would continue.
Similarly, Mr Musa Kidebe, Disaster Management Officer, Borgu local government said a middle aged woman and her daughter lost their lives when a canoe capsized on River New Awuru ward in the area.
Kidebe said the Woman, Fatima Umar and her daughter Hauwa Umar died when their boat capsized as a result of stormy weather.
He alleged that water released from the Kainji hydroelectric dam may have contributed to the volume of water that caused the storm.
The Official said that the driver of the canoe who is also a local diver survived the trouble but could not rescue the woman and her daughter.
He said that the stormy weather resulted in flooding that submerged farmlands in the area.
“The flood submerged rice, beans, maize guinea corn, millet, among other crops worth millions of naira,” he said.