Uganda: At least 29 dead after boat capsizes in Lake Victoria

Uganda: At least 29 dead after boat capsizes in Lake Victoria

Divers have recovered the bodies of 31 victims after an overcrowded pleasure boat capsized in Lake Victoria, in one of Uganda's worst maritime disasters.

At least 35 people died in a boat accident on Lake Victoria in Uganda on Saturday, according to the Ugandan Police Force.

10 people dead after Ugandan boat cruise on Lake Victoria capsizes.

Deputy police spokesman Patrick Onyango told Reuters news agency: "The boat was overloaded and secondly there was bad weather".

The police added that the boat was in a poor mechanical shape.

The bodies were taken to Kampala City Mortuary as rescue efforts carried on.

Ferry accidents are not uncommon on the lake and the number of fatalities is often high due to a shortage of life jackets and the fact that many local people can not swim.

"Such boats can not carry more than 50 people", said lawmaker Johnson Muyanja, who represents part of the district of Mukono, the site of the accident.

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Since the Indian authorities keep away from the island , it was unclear whether Chau's killing will have legal repercussions. An Indian Coast Guard helicopter sent to retrieve the bodies was repelled by a volley of arrows from the community.

The death toll from the Ugandan cruise boat accident has risen to 29 after rescuers pulled more bodies from the water.

"According to one of the survivors there were more than 90 people on board", said Asuman Mugenyi, director of operations for the Uganda police.

Among the dead are local fishermen who rushed to rescue people from the sinking ferry that was reportedly taking in water through a hole at the base after it was perforated by the tractor that was used to "push" the ferry into the waters from it's fix centre. This particular cruise had been marketed as an end of year boat cruise and attracted several middle class passengers, socialites and celebrities including Buganda kingdom prince David Wasajja, artists Iryn Namubiru, The Mith among others.

Serunjogi said that, like many Ugandans, his sister did not know how to swim.

The boat was reportedly hired out for weekend parties.

Other officials said that the captain's emergency commands may have been drowned out by loud music.

The accident comes barely two months after 224 people perished after Tanzania's MV Nyerere capsized in Lake Victoria.