Likoni Day 12: Recovery operation delayed for an hour

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Mariam Kigenda and her 4-year-old daughter Amanda Mutheu drowned in the Indian Ocean after their car submerged

The recovery operation at Likoni to retrieve the sunken vehicle and bodies of Mariam Kighendi and Amanda Mutheu was delayed for about an hour on Thursday morning.

Government Spokesman Cyrus Oguna cited channel traffic, huge ocean currents and scheduled docking of two ships.

“Jana tulipatiana ahadi ya kwamba kufikia saa tatu tutakuwa tumeanza hiyo shuhudi lakini hadi sasa hatujaanza kwa sababu hatutaki kupunguza kasi ya wale ambao wanavuka Likoni kuja Mombasa. Tunasubiri idadi ya wale ambao wanasafiri ipungue ndio tuanze hiyo shughuli,” he told journalists.

The Spokesman further cited huge ocean currents whose speed according to him prevented the divers from resuming operations at 9am as had been planned.

He maintained that the safety of the divers was paramount even as they seek to retrieve the car that was spotted on Wednesday afternoon, 11 days after it submerged.

Two ships scheduled to pass through the Likoni channel were also said to have delayed recovery efforts.

The Government Spokesman said once the two vessels pass then the divers would be cleared to resume the operation.

The Kenya Ferry Services has since indicated that the recovery operation at Likoni has resumed.

“We will keep you updated on any new developments. once again we would like to covey our condolences and sympathies to the family and friends,” KFS said on Twitter.

On Wednesday, Col. Oguna confirmed that the sunken car had been sighted 58 metres deep using technological equipment hired through a private company.

“For now we cannot specify on the time that it will take to retrieve the car from the ocean, but we will eventually get it out,” said Oguna.

The ill-fated car was the last to board MV Harambee ferry on Sunday, September 29, 2019 and reversed when the ferry was midstream, plunging into the ocean.

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