Ukah Timothy, one of the survivors of the Calabar incident, is giving praises to God to be alive to narrate his story, Daily Gossip reports.
We gathered that over 30 people were reported to have lost their lives at a football viewing centre in Calabar, Cross River state capital, after high tension electricity cable broke from its mooring and fell on the roof of the building.
Timothy, was one of those burned in the accident and is now being treated at the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital for severe wounds on his hands, legs and face.
He said: “It happened at the 38th minute of the match. First we noticed a spark on the cable outside, and as everyone was scrambling to leave place, the cable fell on the roof of building.
All my friends who sat beside me were killed. Many were severely burnt. I was lucky to be alive. Before I was taken to hospital, I counted eight dead bodies. I saw many in critical condition.”
Another eyewitness said: “It happened during the match between Manchester United and Anderlecht. I heard a deafening bang. I rushed out to see what was happening. It was a horrible sight to behold.
I wish I didn’t come out to watch the match. Come to think of it, I have DStv at home but I enjoy watching matches at viewing centres. I could have been dead. I can’t believe that the people I was chatting and joking with a few minutes ago are all gone in a most anguishing way. This world is vain.”
A man identified as Chucks Chukwudi, whose shop is located next to the viewing centre, said: “People started entering the viewing centre at about 7:30pm. The first half had just ended when the high tension cable cut and fell on the room.
“The centre was so crowded, and people were falling on each other when the incident happened. There were many deaths and many injuries. We called the police, and they came minutes later and evacuated the bodies.”
The president in a statement, issued by his senior media aide, Garba Shehu, on Friday, April 21, commiserated with the government and people of Cross River state, and football fans nationwide over the unfortunate incident.
Premier League club Manchester United has sent a condolence message to supporters of the club, their friends and families who were affected by the tragedy in Calabar, on Thursday, April 20.