By Oliver Samboko.
POLICE in the Zimbabwean resort town of Kariba have retrieved the body of a Zambian fisherman who is believed to have been attacked and killed by a crocodile on Lake Kariba on Saturday.
The man, who has been identified by his family as 30-year-old Kelvin Mudongo of Game compound in Siavonga, is said to have left home for a fishing expedition on the crocodile-infested Lake Kariba on Friday night but did not return, forcing relatives and friends to organise a search for him.
Both brother to the deceased and a source at Siavonga Hospital have confirmed the development to the Daily Nation in Siavonga. The hospital source said they had received a brought-in-dead (BID) male from Zimbabwe with a severed stomach and bruised neck.
And brother to the deceased, Hitler Mweemba, narrated that his young brother went missing and was believed to have been grabbed by a crocodile while fishing on the lake on Friday night.
He said he suspects his brother was attacked by the reptile while fishing about 3 km from the shore but that the family would wait for the police to finish their investigations to ascertain exactly what could have happened.
Mr Mweemba said efforts by the family and other fishermen to find the body were hampered because they could not cross to the Zimbabwean side for fear of being arrested by authorities in that country.
And according to Zimbabwean authorities, the body of the fisherman was discovered floating near DDF harbour in Kariba town on Saturday morning but that when officers tried to retrieve it they discovered that it was jammed in the jaws of a crocodile and they had to kill the reptile before retrieving the fisherman from the lake.
“We received a report from some fishermen that they had spotted a body on the water which they suspected to have been pushed by wind from the Zambian side but when we reached the area, we discovered that actually the body was in the jaws of a crocodile. We have never seen this kind thing… it is quiet strange,” said an officer from the Zimbabwe National Parks.
Meanwhile, scores of Siavonga residents yesterday gathered at the district hospital to have a glimpse of the remains of the fisherman after word went round that police in Zimbabwe had found the body of the missing fisherman and were on their way to the morgue to drop the body.
Some of the fishermen and residents spoken to called on the Government to crop the reptiles on the international waters before more lives were lost.