Eleven people have been killed in a stampede at a packed concert headlined by Congolese music star Fally Ipupa at the biggest stadium in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Martyrs Stadium.
“It was a stampede that caused the deaths,” a policeman on the scene told reportes.He went on saying,“The music lovers suffocated.”
The country’s Interior Minister Daniel Aselo Okito on Sunday blamed the organisers for the deaths, saying the Martyrs’ stadium concert in Kinshasa went beyond 100 percent capacity.
The stadium has a capacity of 80,000 but the concert had over 120,000 music lovers who flocked the stadium to witness their favorite artist Fally Ipupa perform.Some of the crowd ended up forcing their way into the VIP and reserved sections.
The eventual number of attendees inside the stadium vastly exceeded the number of state and private security personnel present could control.
“Under the pressure of the crowd, the police could not hold out long,” a source said.
Some attendees said that even the corridors of the stadium were overflowing.
“Eleven people dead … including two police,” the minister said as he sent condolences to relatives of the casualties.
He assured people that legal actions are to be taken on the organisers of the event saying that they must be punished for they are solely responsible for the losses.
Security forces had earlier fired tear gas to disperse violent crowds in the streets outside the stadium where many had gathered before the concert by Ipupa.
Fally Ipupa is one of Africa’s leading musicians whose albums sell worldwide.