Dept blamed for death

2008-07-22 00:00

THE provincial Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs (DAEA) should be held accountable for the death of 60-year-old Ben Dlamini, who was allegedly killed by the roaming hippo in Verulam over a week ago.

This was the sentiment expressed by some members of the legislature’s portfolio committee on agriculture and environmental affairs during a committee meeting yesterday.

Dlamini was found with a wound to the head, but a post-mortem examination to establish if the injury was inflicted by the hippo, nicknamed Nonkululeko, has apparently yet to be finalised.

Police earlier said it could take up to six months to finalise the post-mortem.

Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife (EKZNW) and the department came under fire from the committee, which blamed it for not acting decisively when the hippo was first spotted roaming freely on the province’s north coast several weeks before it was put down.

“If the post-mortem proves that the man was killed by the hippo, then his death stands at the door of Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife [the public entity under the DAEA],” said Margaret Ambler-Moore of the DA.

Henry Combrinck of the IFP said an investigation is needed. “Ezemvelo needs to account as to why the hippo was not immediately captured and removed.” he said.

Acting chief executive of EKZNW Bheki Khoza replied that at no time was the hippo in a place that would have facilitated capture, and that the possibility of her drowning if darted was too great a risk.

Happy Bulose, an ANC MPL, suggested that the Dlamini family be compensated for their loss and that they be helped with funeral costs. It was suggested MEC Mtholephi Mthimkhulu explore compensation measures for the family.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.