Nairobi — Authorities in Mombasa have recovered the body of a 46-year-old man whose car plunged into the Indian Ocean at about 4.20am on Saturday.
Kenya Ferry Services (KFS) Managing Director Bakari Gowa told the press the driver of the saloon defied instructions by a marshal at the Likoni ferry channel to stop.
In an earlier statement, KFS had said the driver of the ill-fated vehicle had purchased a ticket before speeding off to the ramps.
"After purchasing a ticket, the driver drove off to the ramps with high speed to the ocean even after being flagged by our ramp controllers to slow down and stop," the statement published at about 6.30 am indicated.
In his media briefing however, Gowa contradicted the statement saying the driver declined to purchase a ticket and forced his way to the ramp.
He maintained that the number of occupants in the car was yet to be established saying the wreckage had been traced 6 metres under the sea.
Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho said a team from the county inspectorate had been dispatched to support the recovery process.
"In the meantime, I urge all ferry users and management to excercise extreme caution as we join the families of the occupants in the vehicle in prayer. We cannot afford to have any more casualties in similar fashion more so when it can be avoided," he tweeted.
The incident came barely two months after a mother and her 4-year-old daughter drowned in the ocean after their car slid off an aging ferry during a routine crossing.
The bodies of Mariam Kigenda and her daughter Amanda Mutheu were retrieved on October 10 after a week-long search hampered by heavy rains and underwater currents.