Search called off, missing children not found


Search for two children missing at sea in Makira-Ulawa province has been called off.

No sighting has been reported.

Provincial Police Commander in Makira confirmed to this paper that bodies of the two children, who were reported missing at sea on January 16, have not been found and the search has been called off.

Last month an outboard motor (OBM) canoe powered with 40 HP engine carried 14 passengers including children overturned outside a logging camp due to bad weather.

An adult woman and two children aged three and seven were unable to reach the shore, while 11 passengers managed to swim ashore.

PPC Peter Sitai said during the search the body of the adult was recovered; unfortunately the children’s bodies were not recovered and are still missing.

He said the search went on for a week before being cancelled.

Police in their earlier statement said the OBM left Kirakira between 4pm and 5pm and were travelling to a logging camp, however upon their arrival at Na’ana Elite logging camp due to bad weather they were not able to go through the passage.

The OBM’s skipper then diverted the canoe to near-by logging camp in which they managed to go ashore, however while they were still unloading a huge wave washed ashore and took the canoe further out to the deep with the passengers still onboard, and unfortunately capsized.

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