“I can confirm to you, on a very sad note, that seven bodies of corps members serving in Gashaka Local Government Area, who were on a picnic at Mayo Sebri, have been recovered.”
Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
NINE members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) serving in Gashaka Local Government Area of Taraba State drowned in Mayo Sebri while they were on a picnic over the weekend. The coordinator of the NYSC in the state, Mrs. Florence Yaakugh, confirmed the incident to Daily Sun yesterday in a telephone interview.
Yaakugh said that seven bodies have been recovered, while the search for the other two bodies was still on. She added that locals were collaborating with security agencies and the NYSC in the search.
Describing the incident as most regrettable and unfortunate, Yaakugh explained that the NYSC would soon make known the identities of all the corps members involved.
“We have very sketchy information indicating that about nine of our corps members were drowned in Gashaka yesterday. So far, seven bodies have been recovered and we are working with other relevant persons to recover the rest and to identify the persons. This is a very sad development and the entire NYSC family in Taraba State is already thrown into deep mourning,” Yaakugh said.
Also confirming the incident, the Taraba State Police Command’s spokesman, ASP David Misal, said that nine corps members were on a picnic along a river at Mayo Sibre, in Serti, Gashaka LGA, when the water volume surged with more force than they could handle and, consequently, due to a heavy down pour, nine of them were washed away.
“I can confirm to you, on a very sad note, that seven bodies of corps members serving in Gashaka Local Government Area, who were on a picnic at Mayo Sebri, have been recovered.
“The information we have at this time shows that the corps members were having some good time in the river when the sudden upsurge in the water level overwhelmed them and swept nine of them off. So far, we have recovered seven bodies and we are working with the locals and NYSC officials to recover the other two.
“We hope to identify the persons involved as soon as possible. This is a very sad development but it is a natural disaster that could not have been fathomed,” Misal said.
The director-general of the NYSC, Brig-Gen. Suleiman Kazaure, was in Taraba on Friday, where he urged the corps members to always be security-conscious and avoid any risky behaviours that could endanger their wellbeing or tarnish the image of the scheme.