Shipwreck death toll rises to 62 in CAR Italian Coast Guard officier carry the body of a deceased migrant in a bag, on February 27, 2023 in the port of Isola di Capo Rizzuto, south of Crotone, after a migrants' boat sank off Italy's southern Calabria region. - At least 59 migrants, including 11 children and a newborn baby, died after their overloaded boat sank early on February 26, 2023 in stormy seas off Italy's southern Calabria region, officials said. (Photo by Alessandro SERRANO / AFP)

YAOUNDE. — The death toll from a shipwreck that occurred last Friday in the Central African Republic (CAR) has risen to 62, locals and authorities said yesterday. 

According to Maick Azoumale, a sand digger on river Mpoko where the tragedy occurred, four more bodies including three women and a child were located overnight into yesterday.

CAR Director General of Civil Protection, Thomas Dimasse, told a local media Saturday that they “were able to extract 58 bodies, lifeless. We don’t know the total number of people underwater.”

He confirmed the figure to Xinhua and said that more people were still missing. “About 50 relatives of the victims continue to put pressure in the hope of finding the bodies of their loved ones. We are currently working with volunteers, especially sand diggers who are helping us find the bodies of the missing,” Dimasse said. 

The tragedy occurred last Friday when a boat transporting more than 300 people over river Mpoko in CAR capital city of Bangui sank. The passengers were heading to the village of Mokelo, in the commune of Bimbo, Ombella-Mpoko prefecture, for the burial of the remains of a group leader, according to witnesses. — Xinhua.

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