Boat Mishap: Police Recovers 3 Lifeless Bodies Of Medical Students

In Breaking News, Education, Reports

By Patrick Obia

Men of the Nigerian Police Force, Cross River State Command led by the Commissioner – CP Gyogon Augustine Grimah said three bodies of drowned medical students have been recovered.

Recall that fourteen Calabar University Medical Students Association had on Saturday 24th June 2023, boarded a boat at Marina Beach for a ride in what was tagged ‘The Paradise Experience’ but along the line, the boat capsized and emptied all 14 students in what eyewitnesses viewed as overload, no fuel and leaky boat.

Eleven of the students were rescued while three were nowhere to be found. But on Monday morning the Police while granting audience to journalists at the scene in Marina disclosed that their corpses have been found – two males and one female.

“We have been here day and night and this morning I want to let you know that the three bodies have been recovered. When the bodies were sighted, our Marine Police raced to the scene, and with a joint effort, they were recovered.

“His Excellency is not sleeping and he is already taking some actions and all the measures in safeguarding lives and properties in this area of the economy is been addressed and you will hear that in no distant time,” CP Grimah said.

Governor Bassey Otu had on Sunday ordered all cruise boat operations and other activities at the Marina Resort be suspended immediately until further notice, urging the police to scale up investigations into the tragedy.

Also, the Nigerian Medical Association (NiMSA) has said the ugly incident happened as a result of negligence, incompetence, and lackadaisical attitude of the crew members and management of Marina Resort.

NiMSA in a statement signed by its President Ejim Clement Egba expressed that the “avoidable and extremely traumatizing” mishap has caused so much anguish to the medical students’ community nationwide.

Part of the statement reads: “The first set of student tourists had a safe landing though some concerns were raised of which they were assured of safety and competent expertise. 

“The second set of 13 student tourists, one driver, and a decan boarded and they took off. The driver of the first set handed over to another driver while he said was going to get fuel. Not long after taking off, the engine went off, water started entering the boat at an uncontrollably rapid speed and amount. At this point, the boat started sinking and finally capsized.

“The very vigilant Naval officers immediately swung into action and came to the rescue of 10 student tourists, the driver and the Deccan bringing them ashore but three students are still missing as at the time of this press briefing.

“This ugly, avoidable, and extremely traumatizing incident is causing so much anguish to the medical students’ community nationwide was a result of negligence, incompetence, and the lackadaisical attitude of the crew members and the management of Marina Resort.

“Factors that contributed to this occurrence include the leaky boat, poor condition and integrity of the vests, poorly maintained engines resulting in the engine going off during the trip, fuel finishing before they got back to shore, little or no supervision by management, poor regulation and monitoring.”

CP Gyogon Augustine Grimah, Commissioner of Police Cross River State.

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