Monday, September 25, 2023

Sokoto communities decry recurring boat mishaps

A recent incident happened when 29 teenagers from Gidan-Magana lost their lives on Wednesday during a boat mishap.

• April 17, 2022
Sokoto boat mishap [Photo Credit: Dailypost]
Sokoto boat mishap [Photo Credit: Dailypost]

Some communities in Shagari local government of Sokoto have decried the recurring incidents of boat mishaps since the construction of Shagari Dam in 2007.

A cross section of the residents on Sunday said many lives and properties had been lost to such unfortunate incidents in the period under review.

“If you can recall, 29 teenagers from Gidan-Magana lost their lives on Wednesday and this obnoxiously spiked the figures of the fatalities caused by such incidents,” Umar Magaji, a resident of Gidan-Magana said.

Another resident, from Modiyawa village, Mohammed Sharu said that 13 persons died as a result of boat mishap 

Modin Sharu, who is a boat driver, called for the provision of modern ferries and life jackets to the communities.

A local diver, Ango Waliyi, said the provision of the ferries and life vests would go a long way in saving lives in the event of unforeseen circumstances.

The chairman of the local government area, Aliyu Dantani, had confirmed the death of the 29 teenage firewood hawkers when the boat they were travelling in capsized on River Shagari on Wednesday.

No fewer than 13 persons, including women and children, died in another boat mishap that occurred in the area in June, 2021.

However, the director-general, Sokoto State Emergency Management Agency,  Nasiru Aliyu, said that the recurrence of such boat accidents was a source of concern to the state government.

“The state government has concluded plans to provide modern ferries to the riverine communities in the state, especially Shagari, Goronyo and Gada local governments.

”The state government will also provide adequate life jackets, as well as properly train the ferry drivers on modern techniques.

”The state government will also ensure the strict observance of all the globally-acceptable safety rules and regulations,” Mr Aliyu said.

He stated that the agency had mapped out emergency plans for all the 23 local governments.


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