By Patrick Okino and Bonny Odongo
Astray leopard on Tuesday evening attacked residents of Corner Aliti village, Ayac Parish, Amach Sub County in Lira district leaving three people with serious injuries.
The injured identified as Patrick Otile, Sam Okeng and Ceasar Otile were among the 200 people who had surrounded the area where the beast was suspected to be hiding.
“When we alerted the police, we were first told that it was only Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) that could handle the animal because as police they are not allowed to kill any wild animal, but later they told us to surround the area where it was hiding,” said Ceasar Otile.
One of the attendants taking care of Patrick Otile admitted at Lira hospital
He added that, “We followed the police’s instructions and decided to surround the place and then dispatched over 100 dogs to hunt for it,” he added.
He said on seeing the dogs and people armed with spears and stones, the leopard became very furious and started attacking them, most especially those having weapons.
“The dogs were dispatched but the animal kept on scaring them (dogs) away and then it jumped at once on Okeng who was having a spear and fell with him down before it jumped on Patrick Otile who had raised his hand to stone it,” he said.
After finishing with the two, Otile said the beast jumped on him and left him with severe injuries on the head, nose and elbows.
Okeng, the first victim said the incident occurred at around 6:00pm when hundreds of residents including the police were gathered watching the leopard which many thought was not a dangerous animal.
“It was lying peacefully near an anthill. But incidentally turned aggressive and started tearing and biting people when it saw people with several dogs,” Okeng had told the New Vision from his hospital bed at Lira hospital.
Otile Caesar admitted at Lira hospital. PHOTO/ Bonny Odongo
Otile Patrick who was second victim to be attacked may take a little longer in the hospital according to the Hospital Administrator, Michael Odur.
He said Otile was deformed seriously on the face and lost all his lower teeth but his two other colleagues would soon be discharged.
Police Spokesperson, Manshur Suwed said it seemed the residents provoked the animal, a reason that turned it very wild.
Peter Ojok, 68 a resident of the ill-fated village said that many children had not gone to school because they were held up in the houses with their parents in fear of the deadly beast.