Stephene told journalists that more people were injured at the scene of the accident and that the death toll could rise.
Regional police chief Willbrod Mtfungwa said: 'There was a big blast which has so far killed at least 57 people'. "Many people died here, even those who were not stealing fuel because this is a busy place", said Daniel Ngogo, an eye witness.
Sixty people have been confirmed dead and 70 others seriously injured on Saturday morning after a petroleum tanker burst into flames at Msamvu in Morogoro town, Tanzania. When it exploded, many were caught in the blast.
Mutafungwa said the dead were mainly drivers of motorcycle taxis - known as "boda-boda" - and residents.
"There are vehicles that carry unsafe fuel oil, as in this case in Morogoro, there are others that carry toxic chemicals or explosives, let's stop this practice, please", he said.
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Police said the tanker overturned on a major road and people rushed to siphon fuel.
A video posted on social media showed dozens of people carrying yellow jerricans around the truck.
- July 12, 2012, Nigeria: At least 104 people are killed as they try to recover fuel from a petrol tanker following an accident in the southern River State.
"We have mobilised all the doctors at the Morogoro regional hospital so the wounded can be treated", the governor added.
In 2013, at least 29 people were killed on the outskirts of the Ugandan capital, Kampala, as scores swarmed around the scene of an accident.