A local official said on Wednesday that dozens of people were missing in northwest Nigeria after an overloaded boat carrying about 160 passengers sank in the Niger River.
Abdullahi Buhari Wara, administrative head of Ngaski district, said the boat left central Niger state and was heading towards northwest Kebbi state when it split and sank.
Wara said that so far only 22 survivors and one body have been recovered during a rescue operation. “There are still 140 passengers who haven’t returned.”
As the boat was designed to carry no more than 80 passengers, Wara blamed the accident on overloading.
According to the official, the vessel was also loaded with bags of sand from a gold mine.
Earlier this month, 30 people drowned in Niger state after an overloaded boat capsized.
A boat ferrying 100 local traders split in two after hitting a stump during a storm as they returned from a local market, according to emergency officials.