Police yesterday confirmed that an allegation of fake ticketing in connection with a deadly stampede at the Soweto Derby will be investigated.
“We have opened an inquest… We will try to establish what caused the stampede,” said Captain Mavela Masondo. There was “that allegation” (concerning fake tickets) which would be investigated.
Michael Sun, MMC for public safety for the City of Johannesburg, first mentioned allegations that a possible cause of the stampede might be linked to the selling of fake tickets at the entry gate. On Sunday he said these claims came from information on the ground, but the matter was now in the hands of the police.
Stadium Management SA’s Jacques Grobelaar said CCTV footage revealed that a group of supporters tried to force their way into the stadium moments before the stampede happened.
Grobelaar is quoted as having said: “A group of people were trying to reach a perimeter over a period of 20 minutes, they breached one of the emergency gates and, in the process, they fell down and people walked over them.”
Masondo said that while police would not yet release the names of the two people killed in the stampede, he could confirm that they were both men, one aged 30 and the other 31. He said of the several people injured, two remained in critical condition.
By this morning some of those hospitalised had been discharged.
The stampede broke out on Saturday at FNB Stadium during the Soweto Derby match between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates.
Previously, Grobbelaar said “solid security plans” had been put in place.
SA Football Association (Safa) president Danny Jordaan said he would “ask for a full report and institute a full investigation on what transpired and the cause of the stampede”.
“A football match is supposed to be a place of entertainment. What happened at FNB Stadium is very unfortunate,” he said in a statement on the Safa website.
Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates expressed their condolences to the affected families.
Orlando Pirates said on Twitter it was “deeply saddened to learn of the tragic loss of life and injury”, while Kaizer Chiefs expressed similar sentiments on their social media account, declaring they were “deeply affected by this incident and would also like to wish all those injured in the stampede a speedy recovery”.
The Democratic Alliance also extended condolences, adding to a call for a full investigation: “The DA stands together with the families and sports community as they mourn the passing of their loved ones,” MP Tsepo Mhlongo said in a statement.