A teenage boy who wrestled an alligator after it attacked his little sister has become a hero.
Regimiya Haikera, nine, had been fetching water on the Kavango River in Kavango West, Namibia, when a crocodile attacked her, biting her inner thigh and the left side of her torso, injuring her ribs.
Regimiya had a fortunate escape when her big brother Johannes Ndara, 19, jumped in and wrestled the beast, allowing the youngster to escape from its jaws.
“We first went to our crop fields to plough,” Johannes said.
“Around 12pm, we came home and since we didn’t have relish to cook at home, me and my sister decided to go down to the river at our parents’ garden to go look for something to cook.”
Johannes said that while the pair were in the garden they decided to go to the riverside and collect water to nourish the vegetables their parents grow.
“My sister was behind me when we went downstream to fill up our buckets and I just heard her screaming from behind and when I turned around, she was caught by the crocodile,” he added.
“I then jumped into the water and held the crocodile by its jaws, and fought it to release her.
“After that, I felt powerless and just held her in my arms and we cried at the edge of the river.”
The victim was rushed to Bunya Health Centre before being transferred to the Rundu Intermediate Hospital, where she is being treated for her injuries.
She is reportedly in stable condition.
The incident has prompted authorities to issue a new warning over the dangers of crocodiles, who kill roughly 1000 people globally each year.
“The public should be cautious when at the riverside and with the water level rising,” Chief Warden Richard Aingura told Namibian news outlet New Era.
“The visibility becomes poor and thus can’t see crocodiles and people should have company and this is what helped the child who was attacked, she was rescued by her older brother,” he added.
“We have dispatched a staff member to observe the area and see if we can catch the croc and move it to an area away from people to avoid it from harming people.
“We are guided by the policy as well and we try by all means to limit any further danger that may be caused by the wild animal to human beings and once the crocodile tastes human blood and there are no sources of food, chances are that it can always repeat preying on humans, that’s why we always try to move or get rid of it to minimise the chances of it doing it again.”
This article by Lizzie McAllister was first published by The Daily Star on 6 January 2023. Lead Image: The crocodile bit the girl’s thigh and torso (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto).
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