Insure your car, home and valuables with iWYZE
BLANTYRE: The bodies of dozens of Ethiopians, believed to be illegal migrants, have been recovered from Lake Malawi after their overcrowded boat capsized earlier this week, police said yesterday.
“As of today, 47 bodies have been recovered,” Malawi police spokesman Davie Chingwalu said, adding that they had been buried in mass graves because the bodies had decomposed.
He said the accident is believed to have happened on Monday night but came to light only on Tuesday morning when villagers and police saw dead bodies floating on the lake and a boat floating upside down.
Search operations were still under way for more bodies or possible survivors, Chingwalu said. He said Malawians owned the boat used by the migrants as they tried to cross the lake, which straddles the border between Malawi and Tanzania.
“We believe the boat capsized due to overloading, and three Malawians have been arrested for aiding the operation with unknown Tanzanians,” Chingwalu said.
Hundreds of Ethiopians, helped by a syndicate of Malawians, illegally enter Malawi from Tanzania every year through the porous border around the northern town of Karonga.
Most are hoping to make their way to SA. In 2007, scores of Ethiopians were discovered hidden in an oil tanker on their way to SA through Mozambique. – Sapa-AFP