Thirty people are to be feared dead following a boat accident on Lake Albert. The deceased persons are businessmen from Runga landing site in Hoima district who were heading to Panyimur fish market in Pakwach district.
The businessmen are said to have drowned at around 9pm on Tuesday when their boat capsized near Songa Lendu landing site in Buliisa district. There were 47 people aboard the boat when it capsized. Ashraf Oromo, the Runga landing site defense secretary told Uganda Radio Network on Wednesday that the business persons were heading to Panyimur market in Panyimur sub-county, Pakawach district to sell their fish when their overloaded boat capsized.
Oromo says the boat set off successfully from Runga landing site on Tuesday afternoon but they were shocked to receive information that it had capsized. According to Oromo, 12 people have been rescued by fishermen while 8 bodies have been retrieved from the lake by police and fishermen.
The identities of both the deceased and rescued persons were not readily available by the time of publishing this story. Julius Hakiza, the Albertine region police spokesperson says marine police has joined local fishermen to search for the bodies of the missing businessmen. He says the retrieved bodies are still lying at Songa Lendu landing site as police make arrangements to transport them to Buliisa hospital mortuary for postmortem.
Boat accidents are common on Lake Albert. On May 25, 2020, eight people drowned after a boat on which they were travelling capsized in Lake Albert. They were part the over 30 football players and fans from Fofo landing site in Hoima district that were heading to Runga landing site in Kibiro parish Kigorobya sub county for a football match.
On December 25th, 2016, at least 30 members of a village football team and their fans drowned in the Lake Albert waters in Bullisa district. They were heading to Runga landing site from Kaweibanda landing site for a friendly Christmas football match.