Five children aged between five and 10 years old were killed on 11 July after an overloaded ferry carrying students along a river in the Irrawaddy delta sank.
Locals in Bogalay township, around 50 kilometres southwest of former Burmese capital Rangoon, claimed the vessel had been carrying 23 students to Kyisu Kyonhpa Chaungpyar village from their school in nearby Kyarinn village, about 1.5 kilometres downriver.
“Only 18 of them [passangers] were saved,” said one man. “Five children – four girls and one boy – died. Apparently, there were a lot of children sitting in the front and the boat lost balance when the driver sped up, causing it to nose dive into the water.”
The driver of the ferry has been arrested and was last week charged with causing death by negligence. He is being held at a police station in nearby Myinkagon.
The funerals of the five children were held on 13 July.