At least three people have been reported dead after a stampede at a campaign rally by President Muhammadu Buhari and his party, APC, in Taraba.

Though the presidency had earlier blamed overcrowding for the deaths, a statement by President Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu, has noted that Mr Buhari “expressed profound sadness over the loss of lives at the All Progressives Congress, APC Presidential Campaign Rally in Jalingo, Taraba State on Thursday.”

Reacting to the incident, Buhari said, “I always feel very sad and distressed when ordinary Nigerians who love me and our party because of what we stand for and have done, make personal sacrifices by taking the pains to show their support, end their lives tragically.”

While appreciating the massive support from citizens, he called for restraint to avoid such tragic incidences, and improved crowd management at rally grounds.

“I want them to stay alive and witness the dividends of purposeful governance that the APC administration will unfold when they renew our mandate,” he said.