Teacher(48) killed while taking pictures of elephants

The scene

A TEACHER in Marange who was among villagers who came out in their numbers to see a herd of elephants that had strayed into the neighbourhood died a painful death after he was attacked by the huge mammals.

James Musiwacho’s (48) body was torn into pieces following the grisly attack. He was stationed at St Andrew’s Mweyamustvene High School.

Manicaland police spokesman Inspector Tavhiringwa Kakohwa confirmed the case which occurred on Sunday morning at around 8am.

“We received a report that the deceased was trampled to death on Sunday morning following an attack by the elephants. The wild animals had strayed into the Marange communal lands.

“Circumstances were that at around 8am, the village head, Nowell Masvaure (60) spotted a herd of six elephants in the area and spread word to villagers of the encroachment. It is alleged that Musiwacho was part of the villagers who were taking pictures and getting a glimpse of the beasts when one of the elephants charged towards them and he failed to escape. Musiwacho died on the spot following the attack,” he said.

Zimparks spokesperson Mr Tinashe Farawo extended his condolences to Musiwacho’s family and community.

He however warned members of the public to desist from attempting to drive away wild animals without professional guidance.

Investigations are still underway to determine the origin of the elephants, which are suspected to have strayed from the Save Conservancy the nearest game reserve.

Mr Farawo said over the past four years more than 200 people have died as a result of human wildlife conflicts, 40 percent of them due to human-elephant conflict.

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