, KINSHASA, DR Congo, Dec 26 – At least 30 people died when an overcrowded boat hit a rock and sank on the Congo river, sparking riots in which angry youths on the rampage set fire to public buildings, officials said Friday.
“There are 105 survivors and we have pulled up 30 bodies. The search is continuing,” provincial government spokesman Monulphe Bosso told AFP.
The accident occurred when an overcrowded boat hit a rock and sank Monday near the village of Yakusu II some 35 kilometres (20 miles) north of the eastern provincial capital of Kisangani.
“At its departure, in Kisangani, the boat embarked 39 people according to the register handed over to the authorities. Perhaps they were trying to cheat river surveillance services… as they took more passengers on board along the way,” Bosso said.
“They embarked many more people… the boat was carrying a lot of goods and was also crowded with people. They hit a rock” and it sank, he added.
A government delegation was heading Friday for the town of Isangi,