Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Mayor slams 'outrageous' Man Utd abandonment

16 May 2016, 12:41

Manchester - Greater Manchester's mayor slammed the abandonment of Manchester United's game with Bournemouth on Sunday over what turned out to be a fake bomb as "outrageous", and called for a full inquiry.

Army bomb disposal experts carried out a controlled explosion of a suspicious package which was later revealed to be a dummy left behind by a private security company following a training exercise.

Prior to the detonation, the Stretford End and Sir Alex Ferguson Stand were evacuated, before the rest of United's 75,600 capacity Old Trafford ground was cleared as well, with the Premier League match against Bournemouth called off 20 minutes before Sunday's scheduled 1400 GMT kick-off.

With cities across Europe on high alert for terror attacks following fatal attacks in Paris and Brussels, Greater Manchester Police intially said they had discovered an "incredibly lifelike explosive device".

But Tony Lloyd, Greater Manchester's mayor and the elected police and crime commissioner for the region, said: "It is outrageous this situation arose.

"A full inquiry is required to urgently find out how this happened, why it happened and who will be held accountable.

"This fiasco caused massive inconvenience to supporters who had come from far and wide to watch the match, wasted the time of huge numbers of police officers and the army's bomb squad, and unnecessarily put people in danger, as evacuating tens of thousands of people from a football stadium is not without risk."

Also read: Manchester rivals vie for final Champions League place

He added: "Whilst this in no way demeans the professionalism of the police and stewards responsible for getting the fans out, or the supporters' calmness and cooperation during the evacuation, it is unacceptable that it happened in the first place."

- Evacuation 'right thing to do' -

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) assistant chief constable John O'Hare said: "Following today's controlled explosion, we have since found out that the item was a training device which had accidentally been left by a private company following a training exercise involving explosive search dogs.

"Whilst this item did not turn out to be a viable explosive, on appearance this device was as real as could be, and the decision to evacuate the stadium was the right thing to do, until we could be sure that people were not at risk."

John O'Connor, a former detective with London's Metropolitan Police, said Sunday's incident proved that security plans were effective.

"It shows that it does work and it might be a pointless exercise for potential hoaxers, or even potential terrorists, to make a target of a football stadium," he told BBC Radio.

Manchester, one of England's major cities, was the setting last week for a series of mock terror attacks designed to test the response from emergency services.

One of those exercises involved staging a mock terror attack in the northwest hub's Trafford Centre -- Britain's second-largest shopping centre.

But police were accused of anti-Muslim prejudice after the fake bomber was heard to shout "Allahu Akbar" (God is great). They later apologised.

The postponed match, the two clubs' final Premier League game of the season, will now take place on Tuesday, May 17 at 1900 GMT.

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page.



Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...