According to witnesses, a speeding driver lost control of the vehicle.
Images posted online soon after the tragedy show bodies scattered all over the street.
Since it began in 2004, the annual carnival, which lasts a month and includes a number of events, has grown in popularity.
The festival, which bills itself as Africa’s largest street party, draws both domestic and international visitors all throughout December.
The fact that this year’s event was the first since the Covid epidemic, which necessitated its cancellation the previous two years, made it unique.
The incident on Tuesday happened during the well-known bikers’ procession on a main carnival route that had been blocked off to traffic.
At the event, riders undertake feats, some of them are national celebrities dressed in vibrant costumes.
According to the police, an intoxicated driver who has since been arrested lost control of their vehicle and rammed into the crowd.
According to the BBC, the automobile was being driven “recklessly” according to the father of a 15-year-old boy who was hurt in the incident.
“When the car reached where the mob was gathered, he began spraying cash on the road after swerving from left to right. When the mob rushed to get the cash, the horrible occurrence occurred, “explained Musa Kutama.
Although Abdulsalam Musa Kutama suffered scrapes and scratches on his thigh and face, he lived.
The kid was one among 24 victims who were taken to the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital and the Navy Hospital in Cross River State for medical attention.
“Last night, we were at the navy hospital, where they treated him, gave him some medication, and then released him. Currently, he is in good health and at home “explained Mr. Kutama.
Professor Ben Ayade, the governor of the state, said in a statement that authorities were looking into how the car managed to get past all of the security barriers blocking entrance for civilian vehicles.
The remainder of the bikers’ parade was postponed by Prof. Ayade, but other activities for the carnival, which will conclude on New Year’s Eve with fireworks, will still take place.