PICS: Ugandan divers pull bodies from Lake Victoria boat accident

PICS: Ugandan divers pull bodies from Lake Victoria boat accident
Uganda cruise boat capsizes, killing at least 29, after carrying more than twice its capacity
The capsizing of a boat cruise on Lake Victoria in Uganda has killed at least 29 people. Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni said on Sunday that the boat was carrying more than twice its capacity of 50 people.

Uganda‘s President Yoweri Museveni said on Sunday that a cruise boat which capsized on Lake Victoria a day earlier, killing at least 29 people, was carrying more than twice its capacity of 50.

More than 200 people died in September when an overloaded ferry sank on the Tanzanian side of the lake.

The boat was owned by a man named Templa Bissase or Bissaso and his wife, according to a statement that President Yoweri K. Museveni issued to the Ugandan Daily Monitor. The boat was travelling from a private beach and had a capacity of 50 people — but was unregistered, unlicensed and possibly uninsured. The boat party’s music was turned up so loud, Museveni’s statement said, the people aboard “might not have heard the emergency commands of the captain.”

On Sunday, a police helicopter flew over the spot where the boat went down on Saturday evening in the waters off Mukono district near Kampala, as a large crowd of onlookers, some wailing, stood on the shore where bodies were piling up.

Saturday’s tragedy was the second large-scale sinking on Lake Victoria in two months. In September, nearly 150 people died after a ferry carrying hundreds of people capsized on the Tanzanian side of the lake, the BBC reported. The ferry had a capacity of 100 people, but 400 people climbed aboard, many of them carrying goods to nearby markets.

Uganda party boat capsizes on Lake Victoria, killing 29

“The operators of this boat will be charged with criminal negligence and manslaughter, if they have not already been punished for their mistake by dying in the accident,” Museveni wrote on Twitter.

Obviously, the operators of this boat will be charged with criminal negligence and manslaughter, if they have not already been punished for their mistake by dying in the accident. May the souls of all those departed in this tragedy rest in peace.

It is a sad moment. UPDF and UPF marine units continue on a search and rescue mission on the waters of Lake Victoria for survivors and those who perished in the boat cruise from KK beach, army spokesperson Brig Richard Karemire said in a statement.

Pleasure boat sinks on Lake Victoria in Uganda, leaving at least 29 dead

There was a party going on aboard the boat, with loud music, at the time of the accident, Museveni said.

Update 3: Death Toll Rises To 32

Rescue and recovery missions search for the bodies of dead passengers after a cruise boat capsized in Lake Victoria off Mukono district, Uganda November 25, 2018.

“They might not have heard the emergency commands of the captain, who is still unaccounted for,” he said.

At least 23 people have been confirmed dead and dozens others missing after a boat capsized on Lake Victoria on Saturday evening, Uganda police said.

Patrick Onyango, the deputy spokesman for the police, said the vessel had encountered rough conditions at the time of the accident.

Divers and speed boatsThe joint search operation was headed by the Police.Speed boats of the Police and the UPDF were being used in the mission as hope for finding more survivors faded.The team was reinforced by the airforce.By 10am local time, nine bodies had been retrieved from the waters on Sunday.Cause of accident unknownIt was not known yet how many people were onboard the ill-fated vessel, which carried revellers for a party after setting off from KK Beach on Saturday.But some eyewitnesses estimated that there could have been over 100 people on the boat, which capsized not far from the beach in Mpatta sub-county in Mukono district, central Uganda.The cause of the accident has yet to be officially established. Some eyewitnesses claimed the vessel was overloaded before setting off.By the end of Saturday, 13 bodies had been recovered and taken to the mortuary at Mulago in Kampala.Among the people who had gathered on the fringes of the lake, some were seen making frantic calls over their friends and loved ones. Others, upon learning of the fate of the people they knew, broke down in tears.The actual number of people who had set out for the boat cruise is still speculative. But up to 120 are believed to have been on the vessel.Among the prominent people who were on the boat and have been rescued include Prince Wasajja, city tycoon Freeman Kiyimba, and musicians Iryn Namubiru and The Mith (real names Tom Mayanja).Talking pointsAs questions continue to be asked, there are a number of talking points.One of them is on the state of the ill-fated boat. One narrative is that the boat cruise party had been scheduled to take place two weeks ago. But it had to be delayed as the vessel had to be serviced.Against that background, was the boat in proper condition to hit the waters? Saturdays trip was the first water test of the vessel since being worked on.Another talking point is on life jackets. Was everyone on the boat availed with a life jacket?  The bodies that were being pulled out of the water did not have life jackets, sparking questions over the safety of the revellers while they were still alive.

Among those rescued on Saturday was Prince Daudi Kintu Wasajja, a brother of Ronald Mutebi, the king of Buganda¬†kingdom,¬†Uganda‘s largest, police said.

A joint rescue operation by the marine units of Uganda Police Force and the Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF) resumed the search Sunday morning. They had to put on hold the arduous work late Saturday due to “lack of enough equipment” on a night of high tide.But by that time, the marine team had rescued as many as 26 occupants of the boat, including Prince David Wasajja, the brother of Buganda king, Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II.The boat was still submerged in the water as the marines continued with the search operation about 200 metres from the mainland.Local media reported Sunday morning that the owner of the ill-fated boat and his wife are among the dead.At around 9:20am local time Sunday, an aerial shot from a drone broadcast on local TV revealed the submerged boat. Divers managed to pull out a body of a victim of the accident, and taken to shore.More bodies would later be recovered.

The East African nation has several kingdoms, whose kings wield considerable social clout but little political influence.

Dangerously overcrowded party boat sinks in Lake Victoria, killing 29 passenger

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ACCIDENTThe death toll from Saturdays boat disaster on Lake Victoria continued to rise as a large marine team concentrated their efforts Sunday around the point where the now located vessel went down.More bodies have been retrieved so far. According to Polices Zura Ganyana, the death toll has risen to 32, while only 27 survivors have been recorded.

Video: Families of the missing passengers in the Uganda boat tragedy call for governments help

Ugandan diving teams are retrieving bodies from Lake Victoria where police say at least 30 people died in a boat accident near the capital, Kampala.

Rescue and recovery missions search for the bodies of dead passengers after a cruise boat capsized in Lake Victoria off Mukono district, Uganda November 25, 2018. REUTERS/James AkenaMore than 200 people died in September when an overloaded ferry sank on the Tanzanian side of the lake.

The boat overturned and sank at about 7 p.m. Saturday night, said senior police officer Zurah Ganyana. She said that 27 people were rescued overnight, lower than earlier reports. More than 90 passengers were on the boat, leading officials to believe that the death toll will rise.

Ganyana said the boat was in poor condition and had been grounded for some time. She said it did not have a valid licence to operate.

KAMPALA (Reuters) – Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni said on Sunday that a cruise boat which capsized on Lake Victoria a day earlier, killing at least 29 people, was carrying more than twice its capacity of 50.

Dozens feared dead in L. Victoria boat disaster

The boat was taking passengers on a pleasure cruise on Lake Victoria, a popular weekend activity for young people in Kampala, when it capsized close to shore.

“The operators of this boat will be charged with criminal negligence and manslaughter, if they have not already been punished for their mistake by dying in the accident,” Museveni wrote on Twitter.

All Boats To Be Registered And Monitored Museveni

Early Sunday a police helicopter hovered low over the spot where the boat sank, as a team of divers searched for bodies under calm waters. As the death toll rose, so did the crowd of onlookers at a beach abutting a quiet village outside Kampala.

It seems the boat was overloaded because whereas it had capacity for 50 people only, it had about 120 passengers on board, who also seemed to be partying with a lot of music, President Museveni said.

Police carried victims in tarpaulins and hauled them into a waiting truck, occasionally drawing loud wails from some of the onlookers. One young woman, seeing a victim she apparently recognized, collapsed and was rushed to hospital.

Video: Uganda Continues to Search for Bodies After Boat Capsized in Lake Victoria

Ugandans Mourn Victims Of Capsized Boat

Witnesses who were there on Saturday night said they heard people calling for help as they tried to stay afloat and others tried to swim ashore. Many were women.

"They were shouting `Help us! Help us!' and the boat was sinking very quickly," said Sam Tukei, one of several local men who used fishermen's canoes to rescue people. "By the time the police came we had saved many people."

It is not uncommon for ferries to capsize on the lake and the number of fatalities is often high due to a shortage of life jackets and the fact that many local people cannot swim.

Video: Fun boat cruise ends in tragedy

Uganda boat accident death toll rises to 33: police

One reason many people died so close to shore was likely "intoxication," said Asuman Mugenyi, national director of police operations. Citing the accounts of some survivors, he said there was a good number of life jackets aboard the doomed vessel that passengers neglected to wear.

Witnesses reported hearing the sound of laughter and live music from the cruiser, Earthwise, suddenly replaced by screams 90 minutes into its journey. They were shouting Help us! Help us! and the boat was sinking very quickly,…

Video: Fun boat cruise ends in tragedy

Lake Victoria boat tragedy: Death toll rises to 23

The boat's passengers, in a party mood halfway through their journey, likely panicked when the vessel started to sink, he said.

Fishermen who had gone to help in the dark on Saturday night were among 30 dead pulled from Lake Victoria after their boats were overwhelmed by panicking passengers. About 60 people were missing last night.

The boat is believed to have been on a routine weekend cruise that is popular among some young Ugandans. Victims include the couple who owned the boat, according to police officer Ganyana.

Desperate relatives gathered on a shore on the Ugandan side of the lake, which has been the scene of several similar disasters, as officers loaded bodies bound in tarpaulins onto a lorry.

We Are With You In Pain Government

Boat accidents are increasingly common on East Africa's major lakes including Lake Victoria, which is surrounded by Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda.

Uganda: Ten Dead, Dozens Missing After Boat Capsizes On Lake Victoria

More than 200 people were killed in a Tanzanian ferry disaster in September, with officials saying it had been dangerously overcrowded.

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