VIP bus plunges into River Oti

The bus, with the registration number GT 5313-19, was travelling with passengers from Accra to Wulensi when it plunged into the river

A VIP bus en route from Accra to Wulensi in the Northern Region plunged into River Oti at Dambai in the Krachi East Municipality on Thursday (9 July).

The bus plunged into the river while manoeuvring to get on to a pontoon to cross to the other side.

A rescue operation failed to yield the needed result. Asaase News got to the scene but the personal effects of passengers, together with other items such as motorbikes and bicycles, were salvaged from the river.

No death or injury was recorded, as all the passengers had alighted from the VIP bus.

Obed Kagbetor, a passenger, told Asaase News that the driver instructed them to alight from the bus to enable him to park on the pontoon and the next thing was the pandemonium and struggle for safety.

He said he suspected brake failure, because the driver of the bus had also complained about having a battery problem.

Although there were no casualties, an excavator that was deployed to pull out the bus was unsuccessful until a winch tractor successfully recovered the bus from the river.

Divine Booson, director of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) for the Volta and Oti Regions, urged all drivers and those who use the river as a means of transportation to be more vigilant when driving or using the  Oti.

Divine Booson said such events happen during the rainy season and everyonemust be on guard to prevent them.

The Motor Traffic and Transport Division (MTTD) declined to speak to Asaase News, as did the driver and his mate.

Solomon Ahiable, Oti Region

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UPDATE: The management of VIP Jeoun Transport Service issued a statement on 9 July disclaiming all involvement in the accident at Dambai.
The statement said: “We wish to assure our cherished customers and the general public that the vehicle with registration number GT5313-19 does not belong to us. Also we do not ply that route.

“We are committed to commuting our passengers safely to their destinations.”

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