Survivor found inside capsized Tanzania ferry; toll hits 209

Survivor found inside capsized Tanzania ferry; toll hits 209”

The death toll rose to 167 and one survivor was reportedly rescued Saturday from the ferry boat that capsized in Tanzania's Lake Victoria Thursday.

"We are going to start burying bodies not yet identified by relatives", said John Mongella, governor of Mwanza region, where the MV Nyerere ferry had been coming in to dock on the island of Ukara.

The death toll from the incident has climbed to 209, as divers continued their search in the waters around Ukara Island, where the ferry had been due to dock when it lurched over and sank on Thursday.

Initial estimates showed that the ferry was carrying more than 300 people between Bugolora and Ukara Island, but the exact number of passengers remains unknown.

Tanzanian President John Magufuli said in a televised address Friday evening that the captain had left a person steering the wheel that had no formal training for the job, The Citizen reported said.

Tanzania's chief secretary, John Kijazi, had told reporters the ferry had a passenger capacity of 101.

"This equipment will increase efficiency in the rescue operation and we will continue with the search until we are satisfied that we have rescued everyone", Kamwelwe said.

Survivor Charles Ngarima said the ferry overturned quickly and covered passengers.

"This is a great disaster for our nation", Magufuli said, announcing four days of national mourning. The man's condition was not immediately clear. "He had gone with his wife but she has not been found yet".

"My son is among the bodies recovered", she said, weeping.

Investigators examine the capsized ferry MV Nyerere, in Lake Victoria, Tanzania, Sept. 21, 2018.

The country's opposition, however, accused the government of negligence.

With a surface area of 70,000 square kilometres (27,000 square miles), oval-shaped Lake Victoria is roughly the size of Ireland and is shared by Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya.

Capsizing is not uncommon in Lake Victoria, which is about the size of Ireland, and the number of fatalities is often high due to a shortage of life jackets and the fact many people in the region can not swim.

In 2012, at least 145 people died when an overcrowded ferry sank while transporting people to the island of Zanzibar in the Indian Ocean and nearly 200 people died in another shipwreck off the coast of Zanzibar the year before.

About 20 people were killed in December 2016 when a boat overturned on the lake as it was carrying passengers to mainland Uganda for the Christmas holidays.

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