A scuba diver and whale shark expert who volunteered to dive to the bottom of the Likoni Channel to retrieve bodies of two victims has elicited mixed reactions.
Volker Bassen, a Swedish national, while speaking to KTN News on Thursday, said that he was able to retrieve the bodies of Mariam Kighenda and her daughter Amanda Mutheu from the ocean for free and in a record two hours.
The mother and daughter drowned last Sunday after their vehicle plunged into the Indian Ocean after sliding from a ferry.
He claimed that he had enough equipment and expertise to locate the sunken vehicle within 15 minutes and get it out of water in 2 hours once he had pinpointed the exact location.
Bassen, who is also the CEO of East Africa Whale-Shark Trust, further said that it was not the first time he was working with the Kenya Navy on a rescue mission.
He first arrived in Kenya from Sweden more than a decade ago and has to date established several diving training schools in the country.
He said he would use his resources to compliment the work that Kenya Navy divers were doing.
Bassen said the Mombasa harbour waters and its surroundings were home to bull sharks which can kill but a shark shield would protect him during the overwhelming task.
Those who doubted he can do the job had this to say:
Ridiculous…just a mere swedish guy 15minutes to locate the submerged car . this is just an attention seeker since we have a government with machineries and resources to do so and it has not managed where is he coming from to pretend to be first and unique.#LikoniFerry
— Bevonce_Ngala® (@NgalaBevonce) October 3, 2019
Because he is a Swedish diver we make it news. Our own Musa here can do the work perfectly but being black he is chased away like a dog. Whoever cursed Africans was from another planet.
— Mutuli Seruya, The 2nd of His Name (@WerimoMutuli) October 3, 2019
This guy is just clueless. He doesnt know what hes up for. Trust me this guy cant and will neither locate or retrieve the bodies and car. Trust our Navy, the ve assessed the situation and cautiously on with the operation
— N M B MARCOSS (@NyamsyMaxxy) October 3, 2019
Then there are those who think he could do the job:
From what this guy is saying its evident its not a walk in the park. Did you hear ‘Nitrogen narcosis’ find the ‘right vehicle’ ‘shark cage’. Say no more that Navy ain’t trying to save them.
— James Wachera (@JamesWachera) October 4, 2019
Kinda misquoting the guy here, he also said the Kenya Navy guys are hardcore, diving down there without a shark shield. Also, when they locate the correct car…
— Alom Tha Great (@alom1807) October 3, 2019
Hahahaha. What’s the work of kenya Navy? As it appears from this gentleman’s assessment, they are ill equipped in terms of hardware and skills. For many years the Navy has been in existence, they have never known what lies beneath the ocean in likoni. What a shame!
— Benard Mobutu (@BenardMobutu) October 3, 2019