Kinshasa market high voltage power cable snap kills 26 people

Kinshasa — On Wednesday, 26 people were killed after a lightning strike on a high-voltage power cable on the outskirts of Kinshasa, the capital of Congo, and officials said they broke into houses and markets.

Patrick Muyaya, a spokesman for the Democratic Republic of the Congo government, said on Twitter that the victims included 24 women and two men, and two more were seriously injured.

Power cables frequently collapse in Kinshasa, a city of more than 13 million people, with outdated infrastructure and informal areas that span non-housing development areas.

The Congolese National Association of Architects said in a statement that the accidents that could have been avoided were the result of a lack of respect for city planning regulations under high-voltage power lines.

A lightning strike occurred during a storm on Wednesday morning, according to a statement from a state-owned power company. The company expressed condolences to the family.

“Women and men were electrocuted and killed in a terrible accident at the Matadi Kibara market this morning following the amputation of phase conductors due to bad weather,” Sama Luconde said on Twitter.

“I share the immense pain of my family. My thoughts are on all the injured.”

Videos from the market shared online showed people lamenting around some corpses lying in the puddle where they fell and showing fresh produce scattered around them. Reuters was unable to authenticate the video.

Mr Muyaya said he and the prime minister would visit the scene and the government would hold a crisis meeting.

President Felix Tshisekedi said the government has already taken steps to relocate the market after the January 7 cabinet meeting, which stated that traffic congestion along the road between Kinshasa and the port city of Matadi was the location. Stated.