Twenty persons, majorly women and children were trampled to death on Monday in a stampede for food and money brought for refugees in SouthEast Niger.
The accident occurred at a youth and culture centre in Diffa, the main town of a region of that name that abuts Nigeria and Chad where a large amount of food, cooking oil and clothing, as well as the money, was distributed.
Aid workers confirmed the account and said about 10 people had been injured and another 20 dead.
The region which hosts over 120,000 Nigerian refugees and about 30,000 Nigeriens have been hit by attacks from Nigeria’s Boko Haram Jihadist group since 2015.
A local official said he was astonished at the situation. “Normally, people who are entitled to the handouts send a representative to Diffa to pick it up. But this time, the refugees themselves decided to come and get it, travelling dozens of kilometres (miles)”, thus causing such stampede.