KABALE; Tragedy Strikes Lake Bunyonyi as three people drown

BY ARINDA NSHEKA

A search and rescue operation is underway on Lake Bunyonyi after a dugout canoe capsized on Saturday evening, claiming the lives of three people.

Rough winds and stormy weather turned the usually serene lake treacherous, leading to the heartbreaking drownings. Two adult females, Naturinda Racheal and Kesande Lehonelia, remain missing, while a five-month-old infant, identified as Grant, was tragically recovered and laid to rest yesterday.

Heavy rains, strong winds, and hailstorms lashed the area for nearly five hours, creating perilous conditions on the lake.  Elidad Kalanzi, chairman of LC1 Murandi village, shared the devastating news.  He received a frantic phone call around 4:30 PM on Saturday, informing him of the capsized canoe and the loss of life.  According to Kalanzi, five people were onboard when the vessel overturned, resulting in the deaths of three and the fortunate survival of two others.

Elly Maate, spokesperson for the Kigezi Region Police, confirmed the incident and assured the public that the Marine Police are working tirelessly alongside local residents to locate the missing women. He expressed optimism that their persistent search efforts will yield positive results.

Lake Bunyonyi, Africa’s second-deepest lake, boasts a mesmerizing beauty with depths reaching an estimated 900 meters (3000 feet) and 29 picturesque islands scattered across its surface.  However, this weekend’s tragedy serves as a stark reminder of the lake’s hidden dangers, especially during unpredictable weather conditions.