When Thulani Moloi didn’t come home after going to play with his friends on Thursday, his family was worried.
And soon, the shocking news spread that the 12-year-old had been snatched by a river snake.
Thulani was playing with his friends along the Jukskei River in Alexandra, Joburg, when the reptile pulled him under the water and drowned him.
Community members told Daily Sun after divers retrieved Thulani’s body from the shallow river, the snake came back and tried to drag it back into the water.
Residents said the incident happened after the water rescue team had wrapped up the body and left it on the river bank for the pathologists to collect. They said while they were waiting, they saw a big snake jumping out of the river. It only vanished after everyone started screaming.
Residents called to the scene after the boy’s friends alerted adults that he had disappeared under the water said they had a terrible experience.
Thulani’s mum, Primrose, who had been called to the scene to identify her son, said she also saw the snake.
“I couldn’t believe my eyes.
“I wondered why this had happened to my boy.”
Joburg Emergency Services spokesman Robert Mulaudzi confirmed the body of a drowned boy was retrieved.
When the SunTeam asked Mulaudzi whether a river snake had killed the child, he said: “There will always be those kinds of rumours, as we know in our culture that rivers are associated with snakes. The same thing happened in Diepsloot.”