A stampede at a Catholic prayer house in Uke, Idemili-South local government area, has left dozens of people killed and scores injured.
Sahara reporters sources say that the trouble started after Gov. Peter Obi of Anambra state and his party’s candidate for governor, Willie Obiano, visited the Catholic night vigil.
Several sources in Anambra state told Saharareporters that the incident happened around 2 AM on Saturday. Witnesses said that hundreds of people at the event gave Gov. Obi and his candidate a cold shoulder, mumbling that their candidate of choice was All Peoples Congress (APC) candidate, Dr. Chris Ngige. The Reverend Father in charge of the Adoration Ground, Rev. Emma Obinma popularly called Ebube Nuo-nso, tried to pacify the congregation.
As soon at the governor and his team left, fracas ensued at the entrance of the Church when the crowd raised alarm that armed men had arrived.
It immediately led to a stampede. Saharareporters reached the Police Public Relations Officer in Anambra state, DSP Emeka Chukwuemeka, who confirmed the incident. However, he could not state how many people died or were injured.
The Police spokesman said that his men had visited the Catholic Church where they witnessed many of the ‘so-called’ dead victims regain consciousness. He said the command is investigating whether the governor visited the church and the role such a visit probably played.
Governor Obi’s spokesperson, Valentine Obieyem did not respond to calls.
Meanwhile, Dr. Ngige has blamed the incident on Gov. Obi. On his Facebook page, the APC candidate accused Gov. Obi and his APGA candidate, Willie Obiano of inducing the stampede after worshipers booed them.
”The priest in charge, Ebube Mmuo Nso had told Obi that the people already knew whom to vote for so should be left alone. Unfortunately, in the sheer act of wickedness, Obi’s goons charged into the crowd who booed at them and induced stampede, which led to the untimely death of 15 persons, including women and children while wounding many more,” Dr. Ngige said.
Anambra gubernatorial election is slated to take place on November 16, 2013.
Source: Sahara Reporters, Vanguard