Two buses have collided, leaving at least a dozen seriously injured and 25 people dead in northern Senegal, traveling to a mega pilgrim in the country’s holy city of Touba.
At least a million people are heading to the city for the pilgrimage that pays respect to a Muslim cleric, Cheikh Ahmadou Bamba, mostly known as Sereign Touba Mbacke in the region.
One bus was heading south towards Touba and the other towards Kebemer when they collided. Authorities say the vehicle heading to Touba was carrying twice the official capacity.
The bus was meant for 14 passengers but was carrying 27 people. All the deaths were from the vehicle transporting the people to the Mourides, a Sufi Muslim brotherhood ritual.
Six of the dead were members of the same family. President Macky Sall and former President Abdoulaye Wade are expected to attend the Touba pilgrimage.
Senegal, which is known for its religious tolerance, has a population that is more than 90 percent Muslim, many of whom are members of brotherhoods that are highly influential politically and socially.