Two children have drowned to death while 16 people survived after an engine boat they were travelling in sank off in Lake Malawi after encountering strong winds, Police have confirmed.
The deceased children have been identified as Emmanuel Phiri(male), aged one year and five months and a Salayi Chirwa(female) aged two months old all of them from T/A Kanyenda in Nkhotakota.
Nkhunga Police Station Public Relations Officer Sergeant Laban Makalani said the incident occurred on Wednesday when the boat left Botosya Beach near Dwangwa River whilst heading for a small island called Chauma which is situated just about half a kilometer from the shores of Lake Malawi.
Makalani said the island is used as a fishing dock while some fishermen reside there together with their families.
“The boat departed Botosya beach with 18 people on board. The passengers included men and women some of whom were going to buy fish from fishermen at the island. Whilst on the way the boat hit strong northern winds which forced water into it. This forced the boat to sink,” the Police Publicist said.
He said almost managed to swim to the island but some women who had little children on their backs failed to secure them and the children drowned.
“Police have since recovered the boat. A post-mortem conducted revealed that death was caused by suffocation,” Makalani said.
Meanwhile, the Nkhunga Police is appealing to the general public to take extra care when travelling on the Lake in order to avoid similar loss of lives.