The death toll from a weekend boat disaster in the Democratic Republic of Congo has risen to at least 47 people, with dozens more possibly missing, local authorities told journalists.
The boat capsized in rough waters on Lake Mai-Ndombe on Saturday, the latest in a string of deadly accidents in Congolese waters.
On Monday, authorities reported 32 people had died in the accident on a boat that was unfit for transport. Its owner has been arrested.
The death toll has risen to 47, Simon Mbo Wemba, mayor of the lakeside town of Inongo, told AFP.
He said the boat’s official manifest had 113 people aboard but there were already 183 people who escaped. He also said around 400 people could have been onboard the vessel.
DR Congo President, Felix Tshisekedi demanded a full investigation and said those responsible must face the appropriate sanctions.
Lakes and rivers are widely used for transport in the Democratic Republic of Congo in preference to a poor highway system.
But accidents are common, typically caused by overloading of passengers and cargo and the poor state of the vessels.
Tolls are often high because there are usually no life jackets and many Congolese do not know how to swim.
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