Almost 60 migrants are believed to have drowned when a wooden boat capsized during a storm off the coast of Guinea-Bissau.
The Head of National Ports, Felix Siga told the BBC that the country’s navy was unable to help when the boat went down on Monday, October 1, 2018 as it lacked the resources to do so.
The boat wreckage has been found but no bodies have been recovered.
Historically, Guinea-Bissau has been a well known set-off point for migrants hoping to make it to Europe.
But attempts to reach Europe via Spain’s Canary Islands from the country and its neighbour, Senegal, have declined as a result of more patrols since the 1990s.
Accidents at sea involving migrants from these countries in overcrowded boats are common.
The coastguard in Guinea-Bissau has two speedboats, but they are often unable to leave the port because of a lack of fuel, the AFP news agency reports, quoting a naval officer.
Once hailed as a potential model for African development, the country is now one of the poorest in the world.
Many of its young people are unable to get jobs and so go abroad to seek opportunities.