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Man killed by Hippo

Hippo chasing man

Man killed by Hippo.

Siphiwe Khoza was walking with her two daughters when a hippo came out of nowhere and attacked them. A 59-year-old woman from Dukuduku Village in Mtubatuba, northern KZN, was mauled to death by a hippo on Friday, 10 June, on the western shore of Lake St Lucia.

The daughters managed to escape but their mother wasn’t so lucky. The three were on their way to harvest incema (grass used to make African grass mats) when the unfortunate incident happened.

One of Siphiwe’s daughters, Nonhle Khoza (36), said the picture of her mother being cut open on the stomach by a hippo will never fade in her mind. “We have been harvesting grass in the same area for more than a decade now. This is the first time that we have been attacked by a hippo.

“The hippos are troublesome on certain areas but not near where we were heading to harvest incema,” said Nonhle. Nonhle said it’s sad that her mother died while trying to put food on the table as she survived by selling grass mats.

Isimangaliso Wetland Park and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife confirmed the fatal hippo incident. The entities’ spokesman, Musa Mntambo, said according to the preliminary report, three individuals, including an elderly female aged 59, years (who was fatally attacked by allegedly went into the nearby wetland, which is a habitat for dangerous wildlife such as crocodiles and hippos.

He added that these individuals were allegedly attempting to harvest incema in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park without permission. He said while the elderly woman was attacked, the two other individuals escaped unhurt during the encounter.

“Normally before the incema season commences in May, iSimangaliso and Ezemvelo engage with nearby communities, including the Dukuduku community (where the deceased comes from) to explain the process to be followed for incema harvesting,” said Mntambo.

He added that this year, various meetings were held to discuss the possibility of incema harvesting. “Meetings were held with the western shore (Nkundusi, Mfekayi and Qakwini) incema community leadership on 27 March. “The second meeting was held on 8 April with the Dukuduku (Khula Village, Ezwenelisha and Dukuduku South) incema community leadership.

“It was explained during these meetings that due to the high water levels of the lake and surrounding wetlands, which attract dangerous animals, it was decided that the incema harvesting season will not take place,” said Mntambo.

He said as a result, they were shocked by the incident. They sent their condolences to the grieving family. Constable Thenjiswa Ngcobo said on Friday, police were called to St Lucia where a hippo had killed a 59-year-old woman and an inquest docket was opened.

Source – DailySun

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