At least 20 fishermen lost their lives when a boat they were on sank in the Benue River yesterday. The tragic event involved fishermen from Ibi and Gindin Doruwa in Wukari Local Government Area of the state.
Jidda Suleiman, the Chairman of Taraba State Water Transportation, verified the incident to reporters, stating that the boat accident occurred between the Anyeci area of Wukari council in Taraba State and the Chinkai axis of Benue State.
According to him, “I was informed that the fishermen converged and boarded the boat to Kwara State in search for greener pasture, and along the way, they had an accident and over 20 people have died.
“Twelve people out of the dead bodies are from Ibi while, some from Gareji, in Gindin Doruwa, Wukari council of Taraba State.
“It has been the tradition of our fishermen in Taraba State that once it is close to December, some will travel to Cameroon, some to Chad and other places to fish till August of the following year.
“It’s unfortunate that the usual tradition turned to be sorrowful this time.”
He urged both the state and Federal Governments to supply life jackets to jetties to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.
Governor Agbu Kefas of Taraba State conveyed his sorrow regarding the tragic accident.
In a statement released by his Special Adviser on Media and Digital Communications, Emmanuel Bello, there was lamentation over the repeated occurrences of boat mishaps. The statement also assured that the government was actively implementing measures to prevent further tragedies on the waterways.
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