By Abdulrasheed Akogun
At least 60 people have drowned after a boat capsized in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
According to BBC report, some 300 people have been rescued but as many as 200 others are unaccounted for following the accident on the Congo River.
Locals said the boat hit a rock east of the capital, Kinshasa, while travelling at night, which is prohibited. Many people use boats to travel long distances in DR Congo because of its poor road network.
Boats carrying passengers on the Congo river are often poorly maintained and crowded. Many people use boats to travel long distances in DR Congo because of its poor road network.
DR Congo’s humanitarian affairs minister Steve Mbikayi said he had received reports that the boat was overloaded and had been carrying passengers at night in breach of the law.
“These are the reasons that caused this wreck with over 60 dead. We have managed to rescue 300 survivors while search and rescue operations are on-going,” he added.
The boat was making a journey of about 700km (435 miles) from the capital, Kinshasa, to Mbandaka city when it ran into trouble near the village of Longola Ekoti in the province of Mai-Ndombe, AFP news agency reported.