Kenyan PM Wants Audit Into Stadium Tragedy

The PM rushed to the hospital immediately after learning of the unfortunate turn of events assured the injured fans that the government would facilitate their treatment.

The premier said a comprehensive audit of the circumstances under which the stampede occurred would be conducted to help in mapping out measures to avert a recurrence of similar disasters in future.

The impatient fans broke into the stadium moments after the match pitting archrivals Gor Mahia and the AFC leopard football clubs.

Football lovers in their thousands had braved the rainy evening to watch the match between the two teams whose encounters in the local premiership league has historically attracted fanatical supporters to the stadium.

Police and Kenya Red Cross officials said six of the victims were trampled to death as thousands of fans tried to force their way into the Nyayo National Stadium.

The seventh person died at the Kenyatta National Hospital where 11 other fans were undergoing treatment for injuries.

“Our emergency rescue teams are on the ground and they have been able to confirm the deaths of six people whose bodies have been found outside the stadium. They are five males and a female,” Kenya Red Cross spokesman Titus Mung’ou said.

“We can also confirm that another person has succumbed to injuries at the Kenyatta National Hospital. That is what we at the Red Cross can say for now because there are several other emergency rescue teams from other organizations involved.”  

Kenya Football Federation (KFF) chairman Sam Nyamweya says Football Kenya Limited, Kenya Premier league management and the Stadia management board are to blame for being casual about the preparations for the match.    

“KFF strongly condemns the mayhem that characterized the otherwise classic match between Kenya’s premier soccer clubs (AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia) on Saturday,” Nyamweya said in a statement on Sunday.

According to the federation that has failed to get recognition from world governing body FIFA, the tragedy could have well been avoided had each of the responsible bodies played their role efficiently.

He called on the government to launch an inquiry to establish what may have caused the stampede during the match between AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia, alleging that tickets for the match were over-printed beyond the capacity of the Nyayo stadium hence the tragedy was inevitable.

Earlier this year, football’s Word governing body FIFA banned the stadium due to safety and security concerns. Gor Mahia eventually won the game 1-0 following an 87th minute penalty that was converted by Collins Okoth.

A fortnight ago, the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier match between Kenya and Uganda, surging crowds broke the gate to the VIP section of the Nyayo National Stadium but no injuries were reported.

Another fan reportedly died in 2005 in another Africa Cup of Nations-cum-2006 World Cup qualifying match between Kenya and Morocco, prompting world football governing body, Fifa, to order the stadium capacity at Nyayo reduced to 26,000 from its 30,000 capacity. Ends.