No fewer than 18 people are feared dead in Shanga local government area of Kebbi State following the collision of two canoes carrying traders and their goods.
The accident occurred Tuesday night around 8:30 pm at a place called Barikin Sakace in Shanga local government when a boat carrying traders collided with another boat which was carrying onions on transit to a nearby market along the river bank.
A resident in the area, Abubakar Maleje who talked to LEADERSHIP via phone said, " It was really a terrible scene as people are brought out from the river. I have seen six dead bodies and 10 are still missing in the river while search and rescue mission is still on."
" Most of the passengers are travelling there in the night not minding the dangers and you see the local boat operators over loading with goods and people," he added.
In a statement made available to LEADERSHIP the chief press secretary to the governor, Abubakar Muazu Dakingari said the two canoes were carrying more than 78 passengers. He also said that six people have been confirmed dead while 12 people are still missing adding that over 60 people were rescued.
According to the statement, Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu while on condolence visit to the area directed traditional rulers, local government chairmen, marine police and inland water ways officials to prohibit night travel by boats.
The executive director of the State Emergency Management Agency ( SEMA) , Abbas Rabiu Kamba also confirmed the incident.
It would be recalled that over ten people died in that area as a result of boat mishap three months ago.