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Hippo attacks, kills man as he bathes in Lake Victoria

Wednesday April 17 2019

Hippos in water.

Hippos in water. A 27-year-old fisherman from Gwassi South in Homa Bay County has been killed by a hippopotamus while taking a bath at Rasira Beach, Lake Victoria. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

GEORGE ODIWUOR
By GEORGE ODIWUOR
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A 27-year-old fisherman from Gwassi South in Homa Bay County has been killed by a hippopotamus while taking a bath at Rasira Beach in Lake Victoria.

Mr Erick Ooko died instantly Tuesday evening after he was attacked by the hippo which bit him on the chest.

According to Rasira Beach Management Unit Chairman Sospeter Ayako, the man did not notice that there was a hippo in the lake when he went to bathe.

“The man dived into the water directly where the hippo was. He was attacked on the spot,” he said.

LUCKY ESCAPE

Mr Ayako added that locals who attempted to save the fisherman were too late as body organs were already floating on the water as they approached.

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Another fisherman, Mr Maurice Owino, who was together with the man, was lucky to escape after he saw his friend being attacked by the hippo.

The animal is said to have disappeared into the lake after the attack.

Homa Bay County Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Station Warden Grace Wendot said they are waiting for a post-mortem report before they engage on the compensation process.

COMPENSATION

“We will rely on a post-mortem report and our own assessment which will determine whether the family of the victim will be compensated or not. The matter will be discussed with the family,” the KWS officer said.

Ms Wendot urged people living near the lake and other water bodies that are habitats of dangerous wild animals to be cautious when using the water to prevent human-wildlife conflict.

She further told residents to report to KWS any incidences of animal attacks.

The body of the fisherman was taken to St Camillus Hospital mortuary in Sori Town, Migori County.