After the death toll from the vehicle that plunged from Akeze-Ukwu bridge into the river increased to 14, the Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, has ordered an immediate investigation into the accident.
Umahi, who described the incident as devastating, further sympathised with the families of the deceased, just as he wished the five survivors speedy recovery from injuries sustained after the plunged into lagoon.
The governor, who gave the directives after visiting scene of the accident, asked the security agencies to urgently expedite action in unveiling the reason behind the ugly incident in Ivo Local Government area of the state.
Umahi, in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity. Francis Nwaze, urged motorists to always exercise caution while plying the routes in the state.
The governor assured residents and visitors that the government was committed to reducing road accidents, hence, the reason it had intensified construction of roads across the state.
Earlier, the Ebonyi sector commander for Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Stella Uchegbu, told newsmen that the bus had been retrieved with 14 persons that could not leave after it plunged into the river, just as she disclosed that professional divers from Port Harcourt and the local ones are still searching for more victims.
Uchegbu added that seven of the passengers were adult males and the others females and that their corpses have been deposited at the Mater Misericordae Hospital, Afikpo.
She said that with five persons rescued earlier and 14 corpses retrieved, it was clear indication that there were more victims still missing, just as she refused to dismiss claims that over 19 persons were involved in the exercise.
As gathered, the bus was conveying the 19 passengers that were leaving for Enugu State after attending their pastor’s burial when the vehicle suddenly veered off the road and plunged into the river.
The Mercedes Benz 608 model bus driver was said to have lost control of the vehicle while trying to overtake an articulated truck on the bridge but before he could complete the manoeuvring, the bus had moved in a speed that exceeded his imagination and it plunged into the river.