As Guinea battles Ebola virus which first broke out in the country in February and had since killed 319 people out of 427 cases recorded, at least 34 people, including several children have been killed in a stampede.
The stampede happened at a beachside rap concert celebrating the end of Ramadan in Guinea’s capital Conakry, medical sources said on Wednesday.
“There are currently 34 bodies in the morgue. The list of injured keeps growing,” a medical source told Reuters, requesting anonymity. “The oldest among them can’t be more than 20. There are young girls among them,” he said.
Witnesses said the event was attended by up to 10,000 people, mostly children and young people, who came to see popular local rap groups ‘Banlieuzart’ and ‘Instinct Killers’.
Adama Bah, a promoter who attended the event in the Ratoma neighborhood, said it was overcrowded and that he saw only about a dozen police officers on the site.
“When I saw that crowd, with all the people jostling, some children choking, I understood that there would be a tragedy and I told the organizers, who weren’t listening to me,” said Bah.
The event’s promoter Abdoulaye Mbaye did not respond to several attempts by Reuters to contact him on telephone.
A senior police source said that Mbaye was called into the station on Wednesday alongside two other people involved in the event.
The presidency declared a week of mourning. The head of a government agency for entertainment was removed from his post following the incident overnight, the presidency added.