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Page last updated at 12:31 GMT, Wednesday, 27 October 2010 13:31 UK

Kenya shuts stadium disaster site

By John Nene
BBC Sport, Nairobi

A police investigator surveys the scene at the Nyayo National Stadium
The Nyayo stadium has suffered two fatal tragedies in five years

Kenyan officials have indefinitely shut down two Nairobi stadiums following the deaths of eight fans in a stampede.

The scene of Saturday's tragedy, the Nyayo National Stadium, as well as City Stadium have been closed.

"To ban these stadiums from all football activities is the best decision," Football Kenya Limited (FKL) chairman Mohammed Hatmy told BBC Sport.

KFL claims City Stadium management has failed to comply with directives to bring the venue up to Fifa standards.

Meanwhile, Fifa President Sepp Blatter has sent his condolences to the "Kenyan football community" after the tragedy.

"I wish to express extreme sorrow and extend our condolences to the Kenyan football community and, most importantly, to family, friends and loved ones following these tragic deaths," Blatter said in a statement.

"I have learned that an investigation is already underway.

"Everything possible must be done to understand the cause of this terrible incident in order to prevent such a tragic happening at this stadium again."

Kenyan police are already looking into the causes behind the disaster, which occurred at a league match between popular sides Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards even though the stadium was not full.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga hopes to have the inquiry wrapped up by the end of the week.

A similar tragedy befell the same Nyayo National Stadium in 2005, as a teenage fan died after a crush developed ahead of a World Cup qualifier against Morocco.

As a result, Fifa barred the use of the stadium for six months while the Kenyan government promised an investigation, even though little materialised.

"Once a public inquiry is conducted, its implementation - unlike in the past - is not an option but is mandatory," Kabando wa Kabando, Kenya's deputy Sports Minister, told the BBC earlier this week.

The latest inquiry is set to focus on ticketing and the deployment of security personnel for Kenyan league matches.

Six supporters died at the Nyayo stadium on Saturday, with a further two losing their lives in hospital as a result of their injuries.

Additional reporting by Piers Edwards.



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see also
Kenyan PM orders stampede inquiry
24 Oct 10 |  African
Kenya to return to Nyayo Stadium
23 Mar 07 |  African
Kenyan official to explain fatality
19 Jun 05 |  African


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