A 12-year-old Boy from Buhera miraculously survived a crocodile attack as he crossed Save River.
In a show of courage, Delvin Mutsvakiwa, a Grade Seven student at St Moses Primary School in Buhera, remembered his grandmother’s survival skills during the attack although he was left badly injured on both hands.
Despite the painful injuries, Delvin did not give up as he poked his fingers into the reptile’s nostrils, a lesson he had received from his grandmother.
With the crocodile’s air supply running low, it became powerless and let Delvin go.
The boy took the opportunity to quickly swim to safety.
The Manica Post inteviewed Delvin and his mother, Ms Matilda Mutsvakiwa, after he was discharged from Murambinda Mission Hospital after a two-day stay at the institution.
“We were helping our cattle cross Save River and I was in front. We had helped the first and second batches of our herd to cross the river. We were crossing with the last batch when I felt a sharp pain on my left arm.
“I realised that a crocodile was attacking me. My friends who were behind me ran back to the riverbank and started shouting, advising me to wade to the reeds.
“I shouted back that it was too deep for me to do that. I could see that if I took heed of their advice, the reptile would eventually overpower and kill me.
“That’s when I poked my fingers into the crocodile’s nostrils. After a few minutes, I realised that it had become powerless. It let go its grip on my hand and I quickly swam to the riverbank.
“I was badly injured and was bleeding profusely. I had to put some sand on the wounds to stop the bleeding,” said Delvin.
Determined to emerge the victor, the crocodile followed Delvin’s blood trail and caught up with him.
With its mouth wide open and ready to devour the young boy, a goat miraculously passed by and the crocodile turned its attention to the goat.
The reptile grabbed the goat and disappeared into the river.
At that time, Delvin’s three friends had rushed to the village to inform the elders that he had been attacked by a crocodile.
“Had the crocodile attacked me for the second time, I would not have survived since I was now powerless. I had lost a lot of blood and was already feeling dizzy.
“When I saw it opening its mouth, I closed my eyes and waited for fate to take its course since I could no longer defend myself,” said Delvin.
Ms Mutsvakiwa said when fellow villagers arrived at the river, they were already crying as they thought that Delvin was long dead.
“There was no sight of him and the water in the river was bloody.
“Little did we know that it was both Delvin’s blood and that of the goat which had ultimately become the crocodile’s meal.
“People were crying and the village head was about to call the police to alert them of Delvin’s death when a weak Delvin shouted that he was alive and was across the river.
“I thank God for rescuing my son and giving him a second chance to life,” she said.
Ms Mutsvakiwa went on to reveal that quite recently, Delvin’s cousin lost his life after a crocodile attacked him at the same crossing point.
“That is when my mother started imparting survival skills on her grandchildren.
“She told them that in the event that they are attacked by a crocodile, they should either put a reed inside the reptile’s mouth or insert their fingers in its nostrils.
“My mother’s teachings saved my son’s life and I am forever grateful for that,” said Ms Mutsvakiwa.
Delvis’ bravery won the admiration of businessman and Buhera North legislator, Honourable William Mutomba, who has since adopted the boy.
Hon Mutomba contributed US$300 towards Delvin’s medical bills.
He has also offered to pay for the boy’s secondary school education.
“God acts in mysterious ways. I believe He saved this boy’s life for us to see God’s power. It is unusual for a child of that age to summon the courage to poke his fingers into a crocodile’s nostrils.
“His grandmother should be commended for imparting such knowledge to him. I am adopting him and will take care of him as my own son. I will also provide school fees and all his school needs until he finishes his Advanced Level education,” said Hon Mutomba.