The stray elephant that escaped a meat-hungry crowd in Voi

There was drama in Voi County after an elephant strayed from Tsavo East National Park and wandered into Mwakingali village on Sunday.

The jumbo was spotted early morning, with word quickly going round and hundreds of curious villagers gathering to enjoy the spectacle. It did not take long before excited bodaboda operators swung into action and chased the elephant as it fled towards Voi town.

The giant mammal then rambled through the Moi Stadium in Voi town before ripping through the fence of Voi police station.

Police officers who were preparing to report to work were caught unaware and scampered to safety as the elephant charged around in the compound. After leaving the police base, the elephant is said to have hidden in a bush near Voi public cemetery.

Kenya Wildlife Service officers who reported to the scene cautioned the public to stay away from the animal, but their pleas fell on deaf ears. Locals were baying for its blood and meat.

Voi police boss Joseph Chesire said the elephant had lost its way back to the park and was startled by the noises from the crowd.

“No one was injured. Everyone is safe,” he said.

Police managed to disperse the crowd so that the animal could be driven back to the park.

The residents were already armed with machetes, axes, and sacks, hoping the elephant would be shot dead and that there would be a free meat-fest.

They were, however, left disappointed and accused KWS officials and police of denying them an early Christmas gift.

One Boda Boda rider, Alex Ngau said, “There is a reason why the elephant had wandered in their homes just when Christmas was around the corner.”

“This was Christmas gift brought by our prayers. It is wrong to take it away,” he lamented.

KWS’s senior warden community service Zainabu Salim warned the public to keep away from wild animals because it could turn fatal.