Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Two infants, both females of six and four years of the same parents were feared dead after another 24 passenger boat capsized on Sunday barely a week after a boat accident claimed the life one Joe Blackson.
The ill-fated boat capsized along the Okrika – Marine Base axis near Port-Harcourt on Sunday claiming the lives of two infant.
It was gathered that the boat was carrying 24 passengers, but ran into the solid debris forcing the operator to lose the control of the boat before it capsized
At the time of this report 22 of the Passengers were rescued by Divers while others, mainly adults were able to swim to safety.
However, two infants of the same parents could not be found after the search was concluded yesterday immediately after the accident occurred.
A boat operater who plies the Okrika and Marine Base axis does not want his name mentioned said the boat was returning from Okrika to the Marine Base in Port Harcourt when the accident occurred.
According to the eyewitnesses the boat operator and Divers were able to rescue the 22 of the passengers while some of them were able to swim to safety. But the two infants were missing and feared dead.
Survivors called for adequate training for the boat operators in the state and provision of life jackets for infants on boat transportation. They also called for divers to be stationed at sea shores in case of accidents.
They complained about the use of expired life jackets by boat operators in the state which remain ineffective anytime accidents occur.
Rivers state Police Command is yet to comment on the incident of Sunday
Meanwhile, the Civil Liberties Organization, CLO, in Rivers state has decried the frequency of boat accidents in the state. The state Chairman, Tonye George, who said he witnessed the accident said the two infants were of the same parents and they are females of six and four years old.
He called for the provision of life jackets for infants.
“As I speak to you those children, six and four years old, are of the same parents all girls. They were three children, one was rescued. They may be dead by now because they hadn’t life jackets were not rescued after the 24 hours search and rescue operation yesterday, ” George lamented.
It would be recalled that a 24 passenger boat which capsized along Bakana waterways claimed the life of Joe Black’s who rescued the passengers.