Crocodile kills Ethiopian pastor during mass baptism

10:09 PM | 5 Jun, 2018
Crocodile kills Ethiopian pastor during mass baptism
ADDIS ABABA - A large crocodile has killed a Protestant pastor who was baptising followers near a lake in southern Ethiopia.

Docho Eshete was allegedly grabbed by the crocodile on Sunday morning soon after he started a mass baptism for 80 people on the shores of Lake Abaya in Arba Minch town's Merkeb Tabya district.

Residents and police told BBC Amharic a crocodile leapt from the water during the baptism and attacked him.

Pastor Docho died after being bitten on his legs, back and hands.

As his horrified congregation looked on, local fishermen reportedly struggled to rescue him. It was said they succeeded only in using their nets to prevent the crocodile from taking the 45-year-old’s body into the lake, near the city of Arba Minch.

The crocodile is understood to have escaped.

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Lake Abaya, Ethiopia’s second largest lake, is said to be beautiful, but the Lonely Planet travel guide states: “It has a large population of crocodiles, which are said to be aggressive towards people and animals because the lake has few fish, their preferred food.”

It is likely that the reptile that killed Pastor Docho was a Nile Crocodile. Some Nile Crocodiles can grow to be up to six metres (20ft) long while weighing as much as 1,000kg (1 ton), and it has been said that the Nile Crocodile causes the third highest number of large animal-related human fatalities in Africa, after hippos and lions.