Death toll in western Ugandan boat accident rises to 108

Updated: 2014-03-25 09:36


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KAMPALA - The death toll in the weekend boat accident in western Uganda has risen to 108 from 19 that were reported on Saturday.

David Kazungu, Commissioner for Refugees in the ministry of relief, disaster preparedness and refugees told Xinhua in an interview here that 108 bodies have been retrieved from Lake Albert as of Monday afternoon.

Most of the passengers on the boat were Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) refugees returning home.

"So far on Saturday we retrieved 19 bodies from Lake Albert, on Sunday we retrieved six bodies and today by two o'clock 83 bodies have been retrieved by the police marine unit," Kazungu said.

He said the total number of the people who were on the boat is not yet known. Fourty five people survived the accident.

"The bodies are being taken by the DRC officials with whom we have been working with since Saturday on identification of the bodies and return of the bodies for decent burial," he said, adding that some bodies especially those for children have not yet been identified.

He said the refugees were returning home after the UN Intervention Brigade neutralized the Allied Democratic Forces, a Ugandan rebel group operating in eastern DRC.

"These were returning back to Congo. This comes after the intervention forces have created peace majorly within the Kamango region. The King of Kamango area has been calling on his people to return home," he said.

He said the search for more bodies is still continuing and the chance of finding more survivors is slim.