A tourist was yesterday left for dead by a raging elephant after he tried to film the dangerous animal behind a Victoria Falls hotel.
BY NOKUTHABA DLAMINI
A vendor, Anele Mpofu, said he witnessed the shocking incident that left the tourist, believed to be from Germany, badly injured at around 6pm.
He said the victim was with a group of tourists that were walking from Look Out Café near Kingdom Hotel.
“I heard a loud trumpet and breaking of trees. l alerted other vendors and we rushed to the bush,” Mpofu said.
“We found an elephant bull trampling the tourist while threatening to charge at us.
“It was a case of life or death and l took a catapult and a stone that l always carry in my sling bag for protection and hit a female elephant that was standing close to the victim.
“I hit it hard on the ear and a herd of about 12 elephants with three calves moved away.”
Mpofu said the injured tourist’s wife pleaded with them to save her husband’s life but was struggling to communicate in English.
He said one of his legs was badly injured and he could hardly speak.
The vendors tried to carry the injured tourist as they sought help.
Nqabile Nkomazana, a vendor, said they found a camera and cone of ice cream at the scene.
Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority ( Zimparks) spokesperson Tinashe Farawo confirmed the incident .
He urged tourists to avoid drawing close to wildlife at resorts saying it was very dangerous.
“This is the breeding season for elephants and they are very dangerous,” Farawo said.
“Last week on Wednesday, another 49-year-old German woman was attacked and killed by an elephant at Mana Pools while taking photos. Elephants are very sensitive and tourists must exercise extreme caution.”
Zimparks officials and police were still gathering information when The Standard crew arrived at the scene.
The injured tourist was admitted to a local hospital in a critical condition.