At least 140 people were feared dead in a boat accident in Ngaski local government area of Kebbi State on Wednesday.
There were 162 people in the boat which was heading to Warra town in Kebbi State from Niger State when it sank into the River Niger at about 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday.
The Chairman of Ngaski LGA, Abdullahi Buhari Warra, who confirmed the incident in a programme on the Hausa Service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), said 22 people have been rescued from the water and taken to the hospital for treatment.
He said the accident was fatal and pitiful.
According to him, the boat was also carrying bags of sand for gold miners.
Warra said: “As I am speaking to you now, there are many people in the river who are yet to be rescued.
“The accident occurred between 9:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. this morning and all the passengers aboard the boat are in the river and there is no hope of getting them alive.
“We also learnt that there are eight people of the same family who were involved in the accident.
“In fact, many people have died and nobody can precisely know their number.
“We are only able to rescue only 22 people who have been rushed to the Warra General Hospital for medical attention.
“We are also able to recover one corpse of an infant girl.
“The boat was supposed to carry only 80 people but carried 160 including bags of sand.”
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