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14-year-old boy killed by crocodiles in Zimbabwe

by Prospero

a close up of a reptile: File Photo

A 14-year-old boy swimming with three friends in the Kwekwe River in Zimbabwe was killed by crocodiles Sunday afternoon, prompting calls for local authorities to do something about the deadly crocodiles.

The victim was identified as Ali Phiri, a student at Batanayi High School in Redcliff who was said to have a promising career in soccer, several news outlets in Zimbabwe reported.

“This is a tragedy and a dark day for the family to have the youngster mauled by reptiles,” Munyaradzi Munikwa, a local councilman, close family friend and family spokesman, told the New Zimbabwe.

“As a family, we are still trying to come to terms with the incident,” Munikwa told the Herald. “We are still shocked because Ali died a painful death.”

Munikwa was part of a rescue team that attempted to save the youngster after two other boys reported the attack, but it was too late.

“We saw the other two boys coming in a huff informing us about the reptiles having attacked Ali,” Munikwa explained to the Chronicle. “We had no option but to jump into the water to rescue the hapless boy from the crocodiles, which were by now drawing the body into the water.”

They managed to retrieve the body from the river.

“We are saddened by the passing of such a young person through such a tragic incident,” Redcliff council deputy mayor Vincent Masiiwa told the New Zimbabwe. “The community is still shocked.”

Munikwa urged authorities to do something about the crocodiles before they kill again.

“Our appeal as a community is for the intervention of the department of Parks and Wildlife,” Munikwa told the New Zimbabwe. “We understand there are more than six crocodiles in the river and they are a menace to the community.

“To date, we have lost six people in that river. A solution is needed.”

Photo of crocodile courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

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