I WRESTLED A LION


A Chipinge man wrestled a lioness with his bare hands and survived to tell the tale. Berty Chigwe (20) and two other family members were harvesting cotton when two lions pounced. They had escaped from the Save Valley Conservancy.

Chigwe sustained serious injuries while his nephew Muzi Chikowo was bruised all over his body. His other nephew, Sam Chikowo (10), escaped unharmed after outpacing a sprinting lion and finding refuge in a tree.

“My two nephews Muzi, Sam and l woke up early Tuesday morning to harvest cotton in our fields. We then heard people shouting from a distance that they had spotted two lions coming from Save River heading towards our direction.

“We ignored them and continued with our work. After about 20 minutes, two lions emerged from a nearby cotton field and started roaring. A lioness charged towards me. Fear gripped my nephew, Muzi, who ran and jumped onto my back. Everything happened in a flash. I remember seeing Sam running away with another lion in hot pursuit,” he said.

“I wrestled with the lioness that had jumped on us. When we fell down, the lioness mauled my left thigh. I was badly injured and blood oozed from the injury. I remained determined to survive and continued wrestling with it. I tried to grab its mouth, but failed.

“I was also mauled on my right hand and it dragged me towards the direction where Sam had ran towards. I continued crying for help as I was staring death in the face.

“As that was happening, Muzi managed to escape and ran to notify other villagers. They swiftly reacted and came to my rescue, armed with hoes, iron bars and drums. When they started beating the drums, this scared the lioness. lt dropped me and ran away into the wilderness,” Chigwe told the Manica Post.



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