Rivers church stampede: Buhari saddened by deaths, issues directive


President Muhammadu Buhari says he is extremely saddened by the reported death of scores of worshippers during a stampede at a religious event in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

In a reaction to the sad incident, Buhari admonished organizers of religious, political and other big events to plan well and carry them out in a disciplined manner to avert similar calamitous deaths and injuries.

He directed that “all efforts should be made to provide relief to those injured in the unfortunate incident” and that disaster and relief agencies of the Federal Government should maintain constant contact with the Rivers State government to ensure that good care is taken of the relief efforts.

This was disclosed in a statement by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, on Saturday.

Buhari also expressed his condolences and that of the nation to the bereaved families and to the government and people of Rivers State and prayed to the Almighty to repose the souls of the deceased.

Meanwhile, the Rivers State Police Command has confirmed the death of 31 persons in a stampede that occurred during a church program in Port Harcourt on Saturday.

The command also disclosed that those who were injured were “swiftly evacuated to the hospital for immediate medical treatment”.