April 20, 2019

30 drown after boat carrying football team capsizes on Lake Albert, Uganda

By Waweru Titus

At least 30 Ugandan individuals from a town football group and their fans drowned when their boat capsized on Lake Albert amid a gathering, police said today (26/12/16).

“There was a party on the boat, the passengers were dancing and others were drunk. The boat was overloaded with 45 people, all members of the football team and local fans,” police commander John Rutagira told AFP.

“The water was calm but the problem came in when the merrymaking team and fans tilted on one side of the boat… It capsized killing about 30 people,” he added.

According to Daily Monitor, the footballers and fans from Kaweibanda town in Buliisa District were making a trip to Runga Landing Site in Hoima District for a football match as a component of the Christmas day celebrations.

They were drumming, singing blowing trumpets and shrieks. Little did they foresee that their energy would be short-lived.

Their vessel was supposedly moving at around 100 meters from the Lake Albert shoreline.

“They overloaded the boat. Eyewitnesses have told police that most of the passengers sat on one side of the boat making it lose balance,” the Buliisa District Police Commander Rutagira said.

He said Police has data that the watercraft operator (coxswain) and a large portion of the travelers were drunk when they left on the excursion.

Police collaborated with fishermen to protect the travelers who were crying for assistance. Six bodies, as indicated by police have been recovered from the lake.

“Surprisingly, the boat capsized when there was no wind on the water. Those who knew how to swim survived easily,” Mr Opira who was travelling in another boat said.

The mishap was the second significant fiasco on Uganda’s lakes in three days. On Friday (23/12/16), around 20 individuals died in comparable conditions on Lake Victoria.

Fatal accidents are frequent in Ugandan waters. Last November, 10 individuals suffocated in Lake Albert on the nation’s western shore.

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