A stampede at Madagascar’s national stadium has killed 12 people and injured 80 others, the prime minister of Madagascar said late Friday.
Christian Ntsay, the Prime Minister of Madagascar, said that fans tried to enter Madagascar’s national stadium for the opening ceremony of the Indian Ocean Island Games, a quadrennial multi-sport event from Indian Ocean island nations. Consequently, the stampede took place at the entrance to the Barea stadium. Red Cross workers arrived at the scene to take care of the people. The workers started treating the injured people.
Reportedly, around 50 000 people came to witness the opening ceremony of the games. Antsa Mirado, a communications manager with the Red Cross, reportedly said, “There were a lot of people at the entrance, which triggered a stampede.”
Prime Minister Christian Ntsay revealed that 12 people died and 11 people suffered critical injuries. According to reports, it was not known what exactly caused the stampede.
Andry Rajoelina, the President of Madagascar, said, “An unfortunate event happened. There was a stampede at the entrance. There were a lot of injuries. We will observe a few seconds of silence because compatriots have died when they wanted to enter.”
President Andry Rajoelina was present at the opening ceremony. The President called for a minute’s silence over the tragedy. After the silence, the opening ceremony of the games continued.
Prime Minister Christian Ntsay told reporters, “The provisional toll shows 12 dead and some 80 injured.” The injured people have been taken to the hospital.
Reportedly, the authorities will investigate the whole incident to know what caused the stampede.
The Indian Ocean Island Games 2023, the 11th edition of the multi-sport event, is being held in Madagascar until 3 September. The athletes are representing the National Olympic Committees of Indian Ocean island nations.
The original host for the games was Maldives. However, the country was replaced by Madagascar.