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Christmas Revelers Die in Zimbabwe Boat Accident

  • Ntungamili Nkomo

An official with the Elected Councilors Association of Zimbabwe told VOA the accident could have been avoided entirely, or at least its impact reduced if rescue crews were on hand.

A boat carrying Christmas revelers in Zimbabwe capsized Sunday on a lake outside the capital, Harare, killing 11 people including five children, police said.

Reports said a strong gust of wind rocked the vessel, causing it to sink. A National Parks and Wildlife spokesman told state radio that the boat was overloaded and operating illegally on Lake Chivero

Police spokesman Andrew Phiri was quoted elsewhere as saying eight people, including three crew members survived by swimming to the shores of the crocodile-infested lake.

Phiri said a similar accident occurred on the same lake Saturday, killing a game ranger. City officials and the police were not available for comment.

Elected Councilors Association of Zimbabwe President Worship Dumba, told VOA that the accident could have been avoided entirely, or at least its impact reduced if rescue crews were on hand.

Police said meanwhile that the number of people who have died in road accidents since the holidays began has reached 44 compared to the 98 fatalities that covered the entire festive season last year.

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