September 28, 2018
Bryan Kimenyi, The New Times
See link for photos & tweet.
Akagera National Park yesterday announced the demise of their most recognised elephant, Mutware. Park officials say Mutware (chief in English) died of natural causes.
Aged 48, Mutware was one of the oldest elephants in Akagera. He was easily recognisable to those who knew him as he had broken his tusks years ago.
“It is with sadness that we announce that Mutware, Akagera’s most well-known elephant, has died. In his last years Mutware would spend most of his time at the very southern tip of Lake Ihema, often in the water, only traveling through the park once a year for a few weeks at a time. Mutware’s death appears to be of natural causes” read part of a statement from Akagera National Park.
Mutware was one of the original 26 young elephants, who were all under the age of eight years, brought to Akagera from Bugesera in 1975.
It is said that he miraculously survived the loss of his tusks at the hands of poachers in 1994 as the battle raged to liberate the country from the genocidaires.
Though he was well known and adored by Rwandans who visited the park, Mutware was before the fencing of Akagera National Park infamous for escaping the game park and destroying property of people who lived next to the game park.