Tragedy struck at Ijede area of Ikorodu, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria Saturday morning as a passenger boat capsized killing seven persons.
The 20-seater boat, carrying 17 passengers and two-crew members, was going to Badore in Lekki area of Lagos, when it capsized at about 10.20 .m
Four persons were rescued and eight others are still missing.
The rescue operations was carried out by the combined effort of Lagos State Water Ways Authority, Marine Police, National Inland Water Ways Authority, Emergency Response Team of Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA; Lagos State Fire Service and the local divers.
General Manager, LASEMA, Michael Akindele said preliminary investigation revealed that the boat belonging to Aki Marine collided at a dredging point en-route Ijede.
Akindele said the rescued passengers are receiving treatment at Ijede General Hospital.
He said rescue operation is still on to recover the remaining eight missing passengers.
“The Agency is still expecting the boat manifest. The rescue operation is ongoing while further investigation would be carried out by the appropriate agencies to ascertain the actual cause of the accident,” he said.
The LASEMA boss advised boat operators and passengers to observe necessary safety measures such as the use of life jacket and regular checks of boat facilities before embarking on water transportation.
Boat mishaps are on the increase in Lagos, with safety measures lacking.
During the last administration, the committee set up to look into a boat mishap in Ikorodu indicted government officials, especially the Lagos State Waterways Agency, LASWA of not doing enough to salvage the situation.
Last week, a boat capsized in Ikorodu, killing one on board, with the General Manager, LASWA, Mrs. Abisola Kamson saying that the incident was caused by early morning fog which led to poor visibility for the captains of the two boats.
She said the enforcement of lifejackets on waterways reduced the number of casualties as all passengers on board were wearing their life jackets.
According to her, immediately the incident was reported, LASWA deployed its water guards to monitor and oversight the situation adding that the Marine Police have also been notified and are currently carrying out an investigation.