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Braggart Swedish diver eats humble pie after failing to recover Likoni bodies

Swedish scuba diver and whale shark expert Volker Bassen has been forced to eat humble pie after bragging that he could locate the Likoni ferry bodies and vehicle in 15 minutes and retrieve them within two hours.

Bassen who had promised to use his resources has apologised to Kenyans after he was given a chance and returned empty handed.

“I realised that I underestimated the conditions here especially what Kenya Navy has to deal with. It is zero visibility, very deep water and terrible current that make it difficult for use to locate the car,” he said after his failed attempt.

The family of 35-year-old Mariam Kighenda and her 4-year old daughter Amanda Mutheu had pegged their hopes in Bassen after he promised to get the bodies in two hours, five days after the multi-agency failed to retrieve the bodies.


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.

But after diving and out, the Swede admitted that he had underestimated the search mission. “First of all I want to retract my earlier comments in the previous interview that I could bring the car up in two hours.

Bassen will not continue with the Saturday operation as he has to travel but mentioned he will be available if the Kenya Navy team need any assistance from him.

The government spokesperson Rtd Col Cyrus Oguna, said the 16 divers have identified three locations to be the most likely areas the car Kighenda and her daughter were in could be found.

“Up to now, we have hopes but we have been unsuccessful,” said the government spokesperson.

The operation to retrieve the bodies will continue today.