Anambra boat mishap: 3 still missing, 7 rescued

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By Tony Oraeki, Awka

National Inland Waterways Authority,NIWA, has recovered the corpse of Nollywood actor, John Paul Odonwodo, popularly known as Junior Pope (JP) and one other body from the capsized boat at Akpaka area of Onitsha and Nsugbe, Anambra East Local Government Area of Anambra state on Wednesday afternoon.

NIWA Area Manager in Onitsha, Mr. Suleiman Nicholas told journalists yesterday that seven persons were rescued while three others in the flying boat were still missing.

It was learnt that Nollywood actors were said to be relocating to Onitsha after shooting a movie at Anam in Anambra West Local Government Area of Anambra State when the mishap occurred.

NIWA Manager further said there were 12 persons that boarded the ill-fated boat, which was almost getting to its destination when it capsized.

He said that out of the three missing persons, two were female, while one was male, adding that his men were already at the scene of the incident at Akpaka area, conducting rescue and recovery activities, with the men of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria and Marine Police.

Nicholas also confirmed that the popular Nollywood actor, John Paul Odonwodo, aka Junior Pope was one of the dead victims.

According to him, “My people said Junior Pope was one of the dead.”

He added: “Whatever information you get now as to the cause of the incident may not be accurate as we are waiting for the report from my men who are at the scene of the incident.”

“My men are on the water now to recover the remaining three missing victims”, he added.

However, the State Commissioner of Police, Aderemi Adeoye, has extended his heartfelt condolences to the families of the actors who lost their lives as a result of the boat accident.

Adeoye noted that preliminary enquiry has given insight into the cause of the accident, stating that an exhaustive investigation has been ordered with a view to determine the criminal liability of any person, if any, in the mishap.