At least 20 youths have died in a makeshift nightclub in a township in the city of East London in southern South Africa, but the cause of death is still unclear.
Senior provincial government officials rushed to the scene, where at least six mortuary vehicles were lined up on the residential street waiting to collect the bodies, an AFP correspondent reported. are sometimes even located in family homes, where safety rules are rarely enforced.
“The number has risen to 20, three have died in hospital. But there are still two who are very critical,” provincial government security department chief Weziwe Tikana-Gxothiwe told local television. A visibly shocked Eastern Cape Province chief Oscar Mabuyane, spoke from outside the scene, a building surrounded by houses in an area called Scenery Park.
“It’s absolutely incredible, we can’t understand this, losing 20 young lives like this,” he said, condemning “this unfortunate consumption, unlimited consumption of alcohol”. and I think young people are not going to experiment,” he said.
“No obvious signs of injury,” provincial police spokesman Brigadier Thembinkosi Kinana told AFP as police were investigating the circumstances of the incident. He said the victims of Enyobeni Tavern were between 18 and 20 years old. speaking of the scene, ruled out a stampede as the cause of death.
“It’s hard to believe it was a stampede because there are no open wounds visible on these dead,” Binqose told AFP by phone. A local newspaper’s website, DispatchLive, reported that “bodies lay strewn across tables, chairs and on the floor; with no obvious signs of injury.”
Unverified footage shared on social media also showed bodies with no visible signs of injury. Local television showed police trying to calm a crowd of parents and onlookers gathered outside the club in the town, located on the Indian Ocean coast, nearly 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) south of Johannesburg. are gathered here and they want to enter the tavern to look for their relatives,” Binqose said.
He said he understood the patrons were students “celebrating pens down, a party after (high school) exams.”