|Man loses part of manhood to crocodile|
|Saturday, 18 February 2012 19:44|
A 70-year-old Gutu man is recuperating in a Bulawayo hospital after his testicles and part of his manhood were torn into shreds while he sustained a fractured hand and a seriously mauled back when he was attacked by a crocodile.
Mr Jonah Maturure of Marutaya village, Chief Mataruse in Gutu who engaged in a fierce battle for life with the crocodile had a box of tomatoes that he was carrying to thank after he dropped it into the water and in the process turned the attention of the large reptile away from him.
In an interview with the Sunday News in his hospital bed at the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) last Wednesday, Mr Maturure, who could not hide his pain said the attack was so vicious that it could have ended his life had it not been for the box of tomatoes that he decided to drop in the water.
He said he nearly met his death last month when he decided to take his tomatoes for sale across Chivake River whose water level was swelling owing to the rains that had pounded the area the previous night.
Mr Maturure said when he got to the river the water level was such that he thought he would easily cross as he had earlier on crossed through the same place.
He told the Sunday News that he removed his trousers before getting into the river as he did not want it to get wet and was only left with his shirt and underwear.
He said he put the trousers, whose pockets had some money and his identity document, in the tomato box that he was carrying on his head and got into the river whose water was at chest level.
"I was not suspecting anything. I had earlier on crossed the river using the same crossing place. But when I was almost in the middle of the river I was attacked by a crocodile. It mauled a chunk of my buttocks before attacking my manhood tearing my testicles into shreds.
"The skin covering my manhood was partly torn but I quickly put my thumb (showing a heavily bruised but healing thumb) in its mouth to try and chock it after realising that I was going to lose my manhood. It then grabbed my hand and I could hear my bones cracking making some cacophony noise at the slightest bite.
"Realising that I was losing the battle, I let go of the box of tomatoes that I was carrying on my head and it fell into the river with a thud making some kind of noise. At that instant the crocodile released its grip on my hand and ran towards the noise. It probably thought I had fallen into the river and I escaped in pain, with blood flowing down my legs from the wounds where the chunks of flesh had been incised," said Mr Maturure.
He said both his shirt and underwear were torn in the attack and the battle that ensued and when he got out of the water he was in his birthday suit with blood oozing uncontrollably from the ferocious attack wounds.
He had to ask for clothes and assistance from a home a few metres from the river. He was then rushed to Chiguhune clinic where he was referred to Gutu Mission Hospital where he was further referred to UBH where his condition is now stable.
Mr Maturure said crocodiles were thrown in Nyazvidzi dam by whites who did not want the surrounding communities to fish in the dam. He said they, however, did not remove them when they went away and now they were many and moving down stream whenever it rains.
He added that he was not the first victim as people from the area have constantly been attacked and maimed while some were killed by the crocodiles.