At least 22 school children drown in Sudan on Wednesday when a boat carrying more than 40 children sank while crossing the Nile in the northern part of the country, state news agency SUNA said.
The children were on their way to school.
Civil defence forces were searching the waters for the missing passengers but had not recovered the bodies, the agency added. A female hospital employee also drowned.
It said the boat’s engine failed in a high current while it was crossing the river to a school in Kabna, a small village in northern Sudan. The woman was identified as a hospital employee in the village.
Locals within the area mentioned that there have always been a warning given out to travelers plying the waters to watch out for signs of high tides.
A man who chose to stay anonymous said:
“It is a very sad occurrence especially from the report we have that the boat had more school children in it. Sometimes you blame the boat captain for not looking out for faults in their boats. We hope their bodies are found and may Allah accept their departed souls”
The vessel went down around 750 kilometres (470 miles) north of the capital Khartoum. SUNA says the boat sank because of a technical failure.