Asake says his “heart is with” those involved in suspected O2 Academy Brixton crowd crush

Four people remain in critical condition

Rising Afrobeats star Asake has said that his “heart is with” those involved in the disturbance at O2 Academy Brixton, which police suspect was a case of crowd “crushing”.

Four people remain in a critical condition after fans breached the door at the singer-songwriter’s gig last night (December 15). Eight people in total were taken to hospital.

According to a report by Sky News, many people who were outside the south London venue forced their way in, which led to overcrowding and the gig being cancelled.

Asake has today (December 16) posted a message on his Instagram in response to the news. “My heart is with those who were injured last night and caused any form of discomfort. I pray you get well soonest. I am also in the process of reaching out to individuals,” he wrote.

He continued: “I still do not have the full brief from the venue management themselves as to what led to the disruption at the entrance of the Brixton Academy, but we are thankful that all was peaceful at the end.

“For my people who enjoyed the beginning of my performance, I am sorry that it was cut short. Thank you for your unbelievable love, London. I love you too much! I’m looking forward to seeing you again in a bit!”

Asake, whose real name is Ahmed Ololade, was nominated in the BBC’s Sound of 2023 poll.

Scotland Yard police officers added to Sky News that the injuries sustained by people at the event were believed to have been caused by “crushing”. No arrests have been made.

Brixton Academy cordoned off by police on December 16, 2022, the morning after a crowd crush during an Asake gig. Credit: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images.

The concert, which was the final of Asake’s three nights at the Brixton venue, was pulled part-way through due to safety concerns. “The reason we have to stop the show is because they have breached the doors,” fans were told in a video clip shared by Sky.

“You’ve got 3,000 people have broken the doors outside and because of security the police have asked us to close the show.”

Footage posted on social media showed large crowds outside the building, with many people holding up mobile phones and filming the scene.

Metropolitan Police Gold Commander Ade Adelekan urged people to “be sensible about what they share” on social media and “not to post material that will be upsetting to those affected by this incident”.

He added that the officers who used force “know they have to be accountable for their actions”, adding that the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards will look at all material, including body-worn video footage from those at the scene.

“This is an extremely upsetting incident which has left four people critically ill in hospital. My thoughts and prayers are with them and their families,” Adelekan said.

“A police investigation has been launched, and it will be as thorough and as forensic as necessary to establish exactly what happened last night.

“The scene will be examined by specialist officers, CCTV will be viewed, every witness that we can make contact with will be spoken to, and all other lines of inquiry will be followed.

Adelekan continued: “Officers are remaining in the area to provide reassurance to the local community in and around Brixton. If you have any information or concerns, please speak with them.”

Police have appealed for witnesses to get in touch and anyone with mobile phone footage that might be helpful to make contact through @MetCC on Twitter.

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