Three fishermen drown after boat capsizes in Lake Victoria

Monday November 27 2017

Fishermen in Rusinga Island

Fishermen in a boat near Rusinga Island. Three fishermen, two Kenyans and a Tanzanian, drowned during a fishing expedition in Lake Victoria near Rusinga Island on November 26, 2017. 

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Three fishermen, two Kenyans and a Tanzanian, have drowned during a fishing expedition in Lake Victoria near Rusinga Island.

The fishermen, Martin Kieti, 41, Joseph Kososi, 33 and a Tanzanian man who was identified as Nyang'ope Jashirati aged 30, died on Sunday evening when their boat was overpowered by strong waves during a storm in the lake.

Another fisherman identified as Dan Otieno, 38, survived the accident.

The four had boarded a fishing boat from Wadiang'a Beach in Sindo Township at around 5pm and went fishing in the lake.

The fishermen arrived in Rusinga Island at 9pm.

However, their journey was cut short when it started to rain heavily, filling their boat with water.


Kaksingri West Location Chief Samuel Obando said the boat capsized due to the heavy storm.

"It was raining heavily in the lake. The boat could not hold the weight of the fishermen and the water that was getting in," he said.

Homa Bay County Police Commander Marius Tum confirmed the incident.

The police boss said two other fishermen clung on to pieces of wood from their destroyed boat and swam to the shore.

However, one was overpowered by the waves and lost his grip and drowned.

"When the boat was torn into pieces, two fishermen immediately disappeared into the water. The other two managed to get hold of floating objects before one got tired and sank from exhaustion," said Mr Tum.

Mr Tum added that the survivor managed to alert other fishermen who were around who then rescued him.

A search for the bodies was launched.


He cautioned fishermen against fishing when the lake is turbulent.

"I urge fishermen to put on life jackets during their fishing activities. They should also avoid stormy lakes," he added.

Lake Victoria Beach Management Units Network Chairperson Edward Oremo asked fishermen not to venture into the lake in the event of strong winds and storms which can cause such accidents.

"Fishermen should be careful and avoid getting into the lake whenever there are storms and heavy winds," Mr Oremo urged.

He asked the county government of Homa Bay and the Kenya Maritime Authority to honour their promise of providing fishermen in the lake with life jackets.