Six people including a pregnant woman have been hospitalised after a stampede at the Central market in the Ashanti regional capital, Kumasi Monday afternoon.
The area at Kejetia in Kumasi became very congested after authorities cordoned off the site where an ultra modern market is under construction.
Hundreds had to squeeze through a narrow route that links the central market area to Dr Mensah commercial area.
Hundreds packed in the narrow route triggered a stampede as bodies crushed into each other.
Six were rushed to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital after receiving emergency treatment. They had difficulty breathing, felt dizzy or had collapsed.
Police officers were dispatched to the scene to deal with the chaos. About 20 officers manned the area to direct movement through the narrow route.
“They go one after the other”, an eyewitness told Joy News Monday.
The redevelopment and modernisation of the Kumasi Central Market began in 2014 and is expected to be completed in three phases.
The construction is in phases to allow businesses to still operate in the area while construction works are carried out. But the market construction appears to have hampered movement in Kejetia.
Traders have been complaining of overcrowding in the area. The market covers a construction area of 172,197 metres square (m2).
The first phase costs more than $259million and it is expected to be completed in October 2018. Government has also obtained €93 million in loan facilities to continue with the second phase.
The second phase of the Kumasi Central Market will involve the construction of leasable commercial space, including 6,751 closed stores, 1,069 kiosks, 60 restaurants, counters, 304 fishmongers and butchers’ stores, 47 livestock stores and food courts.
New public transport terminal, sewage treatment station, union offices, police station, fire station, post offices, crèche, cafeteria for staff, change room for staff, generators, fuel and gas stations plants, as well as administrative offices, would be constructed.