by Oge Okonkwo
Three children were killed and eight people injured, during a stampede which occurred at about 9pm on Sunday, at the residence of the Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko, in Sokoto as a large number of people struggled for gifts being distributed by the governor.
The incident occurred when a large number of youths formed three queues to collect clothing items for the sallah festivities and began to struggle for the larger part of the gifts which the governor usually distributes before the sallah festivities.
As a result of the struggle, eight teenagers were injured and are currently receiving treatment at the specialist hospital while three little children slumped and died as a result of suffocation during the stampede.
An eyewitness told THISDAY that the crowd formed three queues starting from the gate of the governor’s residence that stretched to a distance of about 300 metres.
He stated that security operatives struggled to control the surging crowd in the area, pointing out that during the stampede, three kids lost their lives while several people were injured.
“As you are aware, the governor usually doles out brocade to youths and wrappers to women with an additional N1,000 to enable them sew the clothes before the Sallah festivities every year. He does this as a personal gesture to assist the indigent to enable them have a sense of belonging during the festival.
“But unfortunately, while they were struggling, some of them slumped and died while several teenagers were injured,” he said.
A doctor at the Specialist Hospital, who pleaded anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the issue, told THISDAY that three people died in the stampede and their bodies had been deposited at the mortuary of the hospital.
He confirmed that the eight people who were injured are currently receiving treatment at the Accident and Emergency Unit of the hospital.
When contacted, Special Assistant to the governor on Press Affairs, Malam Abubakar Dangusau, told THISDAY that he was not aware of the incident.