No fewer than 17 persons have been killed in a stampede which occurred at a pitch during a football match in northern Angolan city of Uige.

Scores of other people were injured during the incident which saw hundreds of supporters stormed the football stadium gates.

The match between Santa Rita de Cassia and Libolo was part of Angola’s first division championship. The crowd pushed against barriers when they could not enter before the commencement of the match, with many falling and getting trapped, state news agency Angop, reports. Director general of the local hospital, Ernesto Luis, said football fans had suffocated in the crush.

‘Some people had to walk on top of other people,’ he said. ‘There were 76 casualties, of whom 17 died.’

Eye witnesses revealed that the crowd trying to get into the stadium would have pushed the building over its 8,000-person capacity.

Joao Silva, a witness said ‘When we wanted to go in, we found a barrier.’ He added that he survived the crush but had suffered a broken foot. ‘I was in the third layer [of people],’ he added.

No statement has been released by the Police and football officials.