Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
Nine corps members currently serving in Gashaka Local Government Area of Taraba State reportedly got drowned at Mayo Sebri while they were on picnic, at the weekend, in the locality.
Coordinator of the NYSC in the state, Mrs. Florence Yaakugh, confirmed the unfortunate incident to our correspondent, on Sunday afternoon, in a phone interview.
She said that the seven bodies had been recovered while the search for the other two bodies was still ongoing by the locals in collaboration with security agencies and the NYSC.
While describing the incident as ‘most regrettable and unfortunate’, Yaakugh said that the NYSC would soon have the identity of all the corp members involved and make such known appropriately.
Her words, “We have very sketchy information indicating that about nine of our Corp members were drowned in Gashaka yesterday (Saturday).
“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 state’s police command spokesman, ASP David Misal, said that nine corps members were on a picnic in a river at Mayo Sibre in Serti, Gashaka Local Government Area of the state when the water volume surged with more force than they could contain consequent on a heavy downpour and nine of them were washed off.
Misal said, ” I can confirm to you, on a very sad note, that seven bodies of corps members serving in Gashaka Gashaka Local Government at Mayo Sebri area have been recovered.
“The information we have at this time shows that these Corp members were having some 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.
Daily Sun recall that the Director General of NYSC, Brig.-Gen. Suleiman Kazaure, was in Taraba State, on Friday, where he urged the corps members to always be security conscious and avoid any risky behaviours that could endanger their well-being or tarnish the image of the scheme.