- A 91-year-old woman died after a pig allegedly ate parts of her body in Tsomo in the Eastern Cape.
- "Scavenger marks" were seen on the body of Nogcinile Madlebe, indicating that animals might have fed on the deceased.
- The provincial Forensic Pathology Services will perform a post-mortem on the body to confirm the cause of death.
A 91-year-old grandmother died after a pig allegedly bit and ate parts of her body in Mdukuteni Village in Tsomo in the Eastern Cape.
A spokesperson for the Eastern Cape Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform, Ayongezwa Lungisa, identified the woman as Nogcinile Madlebe.
Lungisa said a forensic investigation has been launched by the Eastern Cape health department's Forensic Pathology Services to confirm the cause of death.
"It is reported that the deceased was found showing signs of decomposition on the afternoon of 7 January 2021. It is reported that there were no animals around her when she was found. However, there were 'scavenger marks' observed by the community members, that indicated that animals might have fed on the deceased," Lungisa said.
"On 8 January 2021, the department became aware of the death of a person alleged to [have been] bitten by a pig in Tsomo."
Lungisa said the department dispatched a veterinarian to investigate the incident.
The elderly woman lived with her son, who normally gets back home late every day from his workplace in the Xolobe administration area.
"The cause of death can only be determined by the Department of Health, under the Forensic Pathology Services. Their findings on the cause of death will be the final verdict or pronouncement made by experts on whether animals fed on the deceased," Lungisa said.
He said based on the information, there was no scientific reason to put down the pigs in the area.
"The department, under the Animal Disease Act 35 of 1984, is tasked with disease control and each disease outbreak or investigation is approached differently, based on the history and clinical circumstances."
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