Twenty people have been confirmed dead with seven others rescued after a boat carrying passengers capsized in Bagwai River in Bagwai Local Government Area (LGA) of Kano State.
According to an eyewitness, the accident happened on Tuesday evening.
Authorities of the Kano State Police Command confirmed the incident on Wednesday.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Abdullahi Haruna, said a rescue mission was underway, adding that the number of people involved in the accident cannot be ascertained yet.
“20 bodies have been recovered, and we were able to rescue seven,” he said. “The boat was overloaded with passengers numbering 40 to 50 passengers.
“We are doing our best to rescue other passengers or recover their bodies.”
The helmsman of the canoe and two other male passengers were among those rescued by fire servicemen and local fishermen close to the river bank.
The canoe was carrying Islamiyah schoolchildren and other passengers from Badau village to Bagwai LGA where they were expected to board a vehicle to Tofa LGA for the Maulud celebration.
“The body of a woman and her baby have been found, and multiple Islamiyah students. The driver and six other passengers have also been taken to hospital,” an eyewitness said.
“We have counted over 40 pairs of shoes. Right now police have arrived and fire servicemen and also local fishermen are on a rescue mission. We need assistance from anyone who can bring torchlight or can participate in the rescue effort.”