A “RITUAL” bath in the flooded Zambezi River nearly ended in tragedy for a 29-year-old Victoria Falls woman after she was swept away by its rising tide.
A n_aked Yvonne Dube of 1340 Chinotimba suburb was almost swept down the 200m deep Zambezi Gorge in the crocodile-infested river. A swirling current swept her back towards the river bank and she clung for dear life to a tree.
Rangers from the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority and her boyfriend Mr Khumbulani Msebele (32) used a rope to reach for her.
Sources told The Chronicle that Ms Dube was with her cousin, Ms Silence Siziba (36), of House Number 2002 Nketa 8 in Bulawayo.
The two were allegedly bathing in the Zambezi River where scores of people usually go to perform rituals in the water.
Police officer commanding Victoria Falls District Chief Superintendent Tadeus Madondo confirmed receiving a report about the near-tragic incident which occurred last Wednesday near the Big Tree, about 200 metres upstream the VIP entrance to the Rainforest.
“I can confirm that we got a report about a woman, Yvonne Dube of Chinotimba who lost her balance while bathing and was swept by the river for about 200 metres while bathing with her cousin Silence Siziba,” said Chief Supt Madondo.
He said the two had gone for a tour of the river when they decided to bath.
While bathing, Chief Supt Madondo said, Ms Dube slipped and fell into the water and was swept towards the gorge.
She was lucky as she survived attack by the crocodiles as well as being washed down the 200 metre deep gorge.
“She clung onto a tree after the water pushed her to the bank,” said Chief Supt Madondo.
He said Ms Siziba rushed to the Rainforest exit gate about 500 metres away where she alerted rangers who swiftly reacted to rescue Ms Dube.
Ms Dube’s boyfriend Mr Msebele who sells curios at the Rainforest joined the rescue team.
It’s not clear whether he was with the two women at the river.
Chief Supt Madondo said Ms Dube sustained bruises all over the body and was taken to Victoria Falls District Hospital.
“My advice to people is that they should not to play near the river as there are crocodiles and they can also drown. Members of the public should be accompanied by tour guides,” he said. – Chronicle