SAD: OAU zookeeper was trying to rescue woman from lion when he was killed, says NASU Chair as more details emerge

The veterinary technologist who was mauled by a lion at the zoological garden of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, was attacked while he was attempting to free a woman, who was first attacked by the lion.

 

The Chairman of the National Association of Non-Academic Staff of Universities, OAU branch, Mr Wole Odewumi, disclosed this Tuesday, Feb. 20.

 

He added that authorities of OAU have shut down the zoological garden on the institution’s campus following the killing of Mr Olabode Olawuyi by a nine-year-old lion on Monday, Feb. 19.

 

“I spoke to some of his colleagues, and they told me what happened. The lion attacked a woman first. The woman is also a staff working at the zoo,” Odewumi told Punch.

 

“The deceased intervened to free the woman from the lion. He must have assumed that the lion would recognise him. His intervention to free the woman must have infuriated the animal. The lion left the woman and attacked him squarely.

 

“After he was freed from the lion’s grip, they rushed him to the health centre on campus here. He however died before he got there. But the second person that was attacked, a woman, is still on admission receiving treatment presently.”

 

Odewumi also said a mourning procession was held on the campus on Tuesday in honour of Olawuyi while the management of the university met with his family.

 

He said, “We held a mourning procession in honour of the deceased this morning and members of the management addressed us after that sober event.

 

“All unions on campus joined the procession. The management promised to take necessary action. There will be a committee that his union will also have a representative in, that will work on the issues raised. I have visited the scene. The zoo has been locked up. It is officially locked up.

 

“The management will not want anybody to go there for now. Some members of the family of the deceased were around and we handed them over to the management.”

 

The management of the institution had in a statement signed by the Public Relations Officer of the University, Abiodun Olanrewaju, on Monday, explained that members of staff who were at the scene of the incident did everything within their power to rescue the deceased, but could not, as the animal held him and mauled him.

 

Video from the scene of the attack shows the moment the lion was killed while the body of Olawuyi lay feet away


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