Ele­phant tram­ples man to death:

The Manica Post - - Front Page - Luthando Mapepa and Daniel Mhonda Post Cor­re­spon­dents

A STRAY ele­phant tram­pled on and killed a 61-year-old man who was herd­ing cat­tle in Save Con­ser­vancy, Chipinge.

The in­ci­dent oc­curred on Jan­uary 1 at around 1pm.

Wil­son Mahu­pani Ma­pakame, of Mu­torwa Vil­lage, met his fate while look­ing for cat­tle that had strayed into the con­ser­vancy.

He was in the com­pany of Sa­muel Mudimu, who es­caped the at­tack.

Man­i­ca­land po­lice spokesper­son In­spec­tor Tavhir­ingwa Kako­hwa con­firmed the in­ci­dent.

“We re­ceived a re­port that two men - Wil­son Mahu­pani Ma­pakame and Sa­muel Mudimu - were at­tacked by ele­phants while herd­ing cat­tle along Save River,” said Insp Kako­hwa.

“Mudimu man­aged to es­cape leav­ing the old man un­der at­tack. We are still in­ves­ti­gat­ing the mat­ter.”

Nar­rat­ing the in­ci­dent, Mudimu said:

“Since it was New Year, the de­ceased elected to rest his chil­dren from herd­ing cat­tle. He wanted them to cel­e­brate the New Year’s Day and we went to the graz­ing lands along Save River and closer to the con­ser­vancy. I was also herd­ing my cat­tle”.

“Af­ter mid­day we de­cided to drive our cat­tle back home so we that could cel­e­brate the New Year’s Day with oth­ers. Un­known to us, some cat­tle strayed into the con­ser­vancy, and while we were look­ing for them, a stray ele­phant sud­denly ap­peared from the con­ser­vancy and charged to­wards us. Within a few sec­onds, the ele­phant had tram­pled on Ma­pakame, and he later died,” he said.

“I es­caped by run­ning to­wards Save River. Af­ter cross­ing the river I in­formed other vil­lagers who swiftly re­acted and at­tended the scene. Un­for­tu­nately, he had al­ready died,” he said.

Parks and Wildlife Man­age­ment Au­thor­ity spokesper­son Ti­nashe Farawo ex­pressed con­cern over in­creas­ing cases of hu­man-ele­phant con­flicts that have re­sulted in loss of hu­man life.

Mr Farawo urged com­mu­ni­ties to stay away from wild an­i­mals as they could be danger­ous.

“We ex­pe­ri­enced an in­creased num­ber of ele­phants in Save Con­ser­va­tive over the years. The area is sup­posed to sus­tain about 5 000 and we are sit­ting on more than 13 000,” he said.

Mr Farawo said they were fac­ing chal­lenges of wild an­i­mals en­croach­ing into com­mu­ni­ties.

He said nearly 100 peo­ple have died be­cause of hu­man-wildlife con­flict.

“From 2010 we have lost more than 100 lives and the ma­jor­ity of the deaths were as a re­sult of hu­man-ele­phant con­flicts.”

Mr Farawo

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