(Reuters) – The bodies of 19 people thought to have perished in a mudslide in Sierra Leone more than a fortnight ago have washed up on Guinea’s shores, the government in Conakry said on Wednesday.
The Aug. 14 mudslide at Freetown’s crowded Mount Sugar Loaf killed an estimated 500 people, but hundreds of others are still missing. Sporadic downpours have continued since, flooding parts of the coastal city and washing away more mud containing unrecovered human remains.
“The bodies in all likelihood come from Sierra Leone since there have been no alerts about boats that have capsized,” said Guinea government spokesman Damantang Albert Camara.
Most of them were in an advanced state of decomposition and were found by fisherman scattered along the coastline around Conakry, about 150 kilometers (90 miles) north of Freetown.
“I saw at least eight bodies and the flesh from the skull had completely disappeared,” said Ousmane Camara, a Conakry resident.
Heavy rainfall also sparked a landslide at a rubbish dump in Conakry last week, killing 10 people while at least 200 people are thought to have died in another slide in eastern Congo.
West Africa’s Niger has also reported widespread flooding that has killed 43 people since the rainy season began in June, including in the capital Niamey.
(Reporting by Saliou Samb; Writing by Emma Farge; editing by John Stonestr