Dozens of people are feared dead in a stampede just before the commencement of a programme organised by a new generation church in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital reports Punch.
Though, the church known as ‘Kings Assembly’ is located in the GRA axis of the metropolis, the programme was at the Polo Club in the Rivers State capital to accommodate the usual large congregation.
It was learnt that the crowd overstretched the venue as the church had invited members of the public to come and receive gift items and food for its fourth anniversary.
A source said some of the invitees
arrived since Friday evening, while others arrived as early as 6.30am on Saturday morning for an event that was supposed to start by 9am.
He said most of the victims were taken to the nearby military hospital in Port Harcourt
“As I speak with you, I have counted 21 corpse at the military hospital. I heard some were taken to a different facility.
“This is not the first time the church is holding this programme, but the crowd since yesterday (Friday) till this morning is much.
“It was said that gift items and free food would be served. It is very painful,” the source who pleaded anonymity stated.
It was learnt that the small gate leading into the venue was pushed open on Saturday morning to enable them occupy good positions leading to a stampede.
When contacted, the acting spokesperson of the state Police Command, Grace Iringe-Koko, confirmed the incident, but could not give a figure just yet.
“I am doing a press statement on the incident. It would be released soon,” she stated.