Johannesburg - South African Breweries (SAB) on Monday said it would contribute towards the funeral costs of the families of the two football fans who were trampled to death just before the Carling Black Label Cup fixture between glamour clubs Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates kicked off at FNB Stadium at the weekend.
Reports suggest that a group of people tried to push their way through a gate at the stadium and the two victims were caught up in the ensuing stampede. As many as 19 others were hurt - one of them critically.
However, authorities decided to let the game, which was won by Chiefs by a single goal, continue. Many fans were not aware of the tragedy that had unfolded outside the 90,000-seater stadium 20 minutes before kick-off.
In a statement on Monday, the brewing company said: "SAB sends its heartfelt condolences to those families who lost loved ones due to the unfortunate incident. We appreciate the passion and love the fans have for the game of football and are deeply saddened by the incident. We wish all those injured a speedy recovery and understand that they have been provided medical treatment and discharged from hospital."
SAB said it was keeping a close watch on the condition of the critically injured individual, who was hospitalised after the incident, with a view to assist where possible.
SAB, the producer of Carling Black Label - the sponsors of the Cup - said it was "confident that all safety and security measures, procedures and protocols were followed in the months leading to and during the event".
Stadium authorities said investigations into the tragedy were continuing. SAB said it would support the relevant authorities conducting the investigation into the incident.
AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY