Africa / Search for Tanzania ferry disaster survivors goes on as toll tops 161

Reuters . Dar Es Salaam | Published: 09:40, Sep 21,2018 | Updated: 14:19, Sep 22,2018


Rescue workers are seen at the scene where a ferry overturned in Lake Victoria, Tanzania on Saturday. This still image is taken from video. — Reuters photo

Divers were on Saturday searching for survivors in the sunken wreck of an overcrowded ferry that capsized on Lake Victoria, Tanzania, as an official said the death toll from Thursday's disaster had risen to 161.

Four navy divers went inside the MV Nyerere early on Saturday after hearing sounds that suggested signs of life.

Their initial search failed to locate survivors, while bodies continued to float to the surface around the vessel.

State broadcaster TBC said the number of dead stood at 161, citing John Mongella, commissioner for the Mwanza region where the disaster occurred.

The ferry sank on Thursday evening just a few metres from the dock on Ukerewe, the lake's biggest island. Initial estimates suggested there were more than 300 people on board.

On Friday president John Magufuli ordered the arrest of those responsible for the sinking.

Want stories like this in your inbox?

Sign up to exclusive daily email