Slow News Day

A reader named Garland forwards an incredible story from Uganda:
In a bizarre incident in Nebbi district, a policeman says he was attacked by an aggressive tortoise at his home. 
Charles Onegiu, who is attached to Ndew Police Post in Ndew sub-county, says he was in his grass-thatched hut sipping away on a cup of tea when the incident happened. The tortoise crept in and when Onegiu tried to scare it off, the hard-shelled creature appeared unfazed, and instead turned aggressive. The policeman, who had just returned home after a long field day training crime preventers, tried to wave off his unwanted visitor. 
“I tried to scare it but the tortoise became very aggressive. I took a stick to chase it but it instead became more violent making me to make alarm. “I immediately picked a plastic chair to hit it. It then got out of the hut and moved towards the latrine as people rushed to my rescue,” he told New Vision. 
The shaken Onegiu then instinctively reached for his firearm and shot the fleeing reptile dead. “When it came out, I reached for my gun and shot it dead. It was a very big white tortoise. As I talk now, I am still scared because it is the first time I have seen such an incident happen in my life or heard of one,” he said. “It was a wonderful morning for me after training the crime preventers for the sub-county on the basics of their jobs. Little did I know that a different chapter awaited me later at home,”. . .
He had called his boss, Onesmus Mwesigwa, who is the Nebbi district police commander (DPC), and told him about the incident. He then requested him to allow him leave his work station. “But he consoled me and advised me to keep on duty,” said Onegiu, adding, “My father also came to talk and consoled me about the incident, but I’m still scared.” 
Drawing reference from his experience, the policeman advised people to always be on the look-out for any kind of danger. 
After Onegiu had killed the tortoise, a group of people belonging to the Charismatic faith prayed for him, before burning the dead reptile to ashes. 
The only good thing about being threatened by a violent tortoise is if you don’t happen to have a firearm handy like Officer Onegiu did, you still have time to go out and buy one.


  1. BBC "News From Elsewhere" updates for this fast moving story.

  2. "Nebbi district police commander Onesmus Mwesigwa said that his officer's extreme reaction to the attack may have been down to local superstitions "where people think 'somebody is after me'"

    Superstitions? The next paragraph describes good reasons for locals to think somebody is after them, and that's before tortoises were going rogue.

  3. "the policeman advised people to always be on the look-out for any kind of danger."
    Sound advice.
    I am still puzzled, though, why the Charismatics burned the tigerish testudine instead of making some nice turtle soup.

    1. I would say because cremation prevents the tortoise's ghost from haunting you, while eating soup made from it would cause you to be possessed by the tortoises evil spirit, though I have no idea why they did it.

  4. Languormonkey14/7/14 7:17 AM

    Life imitates Man's Life

  5. When even tortoises are running amok surely the end is near.


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