Jumbo tramples handler, shot dead after attack

A VICTORIA FALLS animal handler is battling for his life at Mpilo Central Hospital after a domesticated elephant trampled and gored him several times.

By Nokuthaba Dlamini

The incident happened on Wednesday morning at Dibamombe Safari Lodge 32km from Victoria Falls town.

The elephant, called Dojiwe, was shot and killed by Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority rangers after the attack on Thursday.

A witness and co-worker said the elephant turned against James Tshuma and their manager, as they were chasing it away from a maize patch in the garden.

“After opening the paddock, Dojiwe went to the garden instead of going to graze. Our manager [Hazel] Palmer, together with Tshuma, then led her out and she complied. As they were leading her out, she hit Palmer with her trunk and that is when Tshuma tried to reprimand her, but she immediately turned on him,” Stephen Tshuma said.

“It lifted him up before throwing him to the ground and trampling on his feet and goring him all over his body. He was badly injured.

“It then left him after noticing the feeding cubes that he had dropped scattered all over and that’s when we took him to hospital and he was transferred to Bulawayo.”

Dojiwe, the elephant, was popularly known for her adventurous and friendly behaviour towards tourists, who would visit the site to marvel at her kneeling down and kicking the ball, among other tricks.

Tshuma said it was their first time to witness such behaviour since her adoption.

Last year, another domesticated elephant called Mbanje from Adventure Zone was shot after trampling its handler to death.


Animal rights activists condemn elephants capture and rides, arguing that the practice is cruel and should be banned.

8 Comments

  1. Oh noooooo!! I never thought Dojiwe would have killed anyone. I am sad for the humans and I pray that they recover soon.I cannot get over that the elephant that lovely elephant is now dead. No this is terrible.

  2. Shooting her was unnecessary as she should never have been left alone in the first place and was obviously never trained properly by experienced trainers.
    SAD.

    1. there are certain traits in animals that may remain dormant or suppressed and once they come out the best option is to isolate or kill

  3. Comment…@chimbambaira, its called, ‘ the call of the wild’. Oliver Mtukudzi sung, ‘ you can take me out of the ghetto but you cant take the ghetto out me’ same with animals. Its unfortunate the so-called animals lovers think they know it all..

  4. It is very cruel to kill the elephant for showing its true colors .

  5. It is cruel to kill the elephant for showing its true colors . Also remember , you give a dog a bad name and you hang it . What do you expect from Dojiwe , Mbanje and other bad named animals or people ? Tame these animals and please give them tame names like Polite , champion etc

  6. Thus bad. I wish him a speedy recovery.

    Some names I think a not even good for animals as well. Look at what Mbanje did and now its Dojiwe. Thus me just thing loud….

  7. Should have left the elephant in the wild in the first place.

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