By Sammeni Kamsobbi
The Adamawa State Government has commiserated with Dandu and Rugange communities of Yola South Local Government Area over the boat mishap which took place on Friday 8th September, 2023.
The Adamawa State Governor, Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri while commiserating with the families of the deceased, assured that the State Government would not relent in coming up with policies and programmes aimed at ensuring safety on the waterways.
Dandu and Rugange communities are located on the banks of river Benue, Yola South local Government Area with the inhabitants predominantly farmers and fishermen.
The two communities were thrown into mourning on last Friday noon following the boat mishap involving some members of the communities.
Deputy Governor Professor Kaletapwa Farauta on behalf of Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri led Government delegation to the affected communities to sympathize with them and the families of those involved in the incident.
He said the entire Government of Adamawa is moved by what happened and share in their grief, praying God to forestall future occurrence.
He added that the Government would remain steadfast in its support towards protecting lives and properties, that such devastating experience including the loss of lives and property have remained a matter of serious concern to both the communities and Government.
While at the two communities, he called on those living along the River Banks who use canoe as a means of transportation to always apply some basic safety measures such as avoid overloading, even as he directed ADSEMA to work towards immediate provision of life jackets to reduce the loss of lives in case of such eventuality.
Joy Ibrahim who hails from Dandu community is one of the rescued victim testified that they were returning home after attending to their business activities, and were suddenly caught up in the middle of the river by a wind storm, leaving them at the mercy of God.
A community leader, Kiliyobas Baidu described the experience as devastating, appreciating the Government of Adamawa for having it's people at heart at all times.
The attention of the Governor was also drawn to other rescued victims who were dropped out from school at primary level of which the father to one of the girls attributed it to financial difficulties.
In her magnanimity, the representative of the Governor, Professor Farauta directed the immediate enrollment of the two girls back to school, even as she gave the same directive for one other woman to be enrolled in skill acquisition.
Reports indicate that passengers including women and children are being ferried across a popular River Banks of Rugange and Dandu communities before capsizing, living the occupants struggling for safety.
While giving statistics of the incident, the Executive Secretary, Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency, Mohammed Suleiman revealed that 23 people were on board, 8 have been rescued alive, Eight dead bodies were recovered while others are still missing, adding that search and rescue mission is still ongoing.