54 survive Lake Malawi tragedy, 20 still missing

Lake Malawi

At least 54 people have survived the boat accident which occurred on Lake Malawi in Rumphi on Sunday while 20 are still feared dead, authorities have confirmed.

The accident happened after a boat carrying 79 passengers capsized on the lake.

According to a press release from the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA), some of the survivors were rescued by people from surrounding communities while others swam back to the shore.

The death toll remains at five but 20 people are reported to be missing by their relatives.

“The Malawi Defence Force officers from Chilumba Barracks are on site of the accident to continue searching for those missing, in collaboration with the Malawi Police Service until they complete the rescue exercise,” reads the statement from DoDMA.

Government has since extended its condolence to the bereaved families for losing their loved ones during this tragic accident.

According to DoDMA, government will cover the costs of the funeral arrangements of the victims of the accident as well as taking care of the hospital bills for those who survived.

The tragedy occurred after the boat capsized at Mlowe on Lake Malawi in Rumphi.

The boat was on its way to New Salawe in Nkhata Bay via Tchalo, Zunga and Old Salawe in Rumphi but it capsized 100 metres into the lake.

Most of the 79 passengers on board were coming from Easter prayers.