“He was still in a pool of blood. I then tried to turn him around to help him, but my brother was already dead. He died in my arms.”
These are the words of Ndateelela Ngipandulwa, a sister of security guard Ruben Abraham (44), who died in Oshakati Intermediate Hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU) after being brutally attacked by five Rottweilers at the town on Sunday morning.
The police say the dogs belonged to an Oshakati businesswoman.
The dogs allegedly passed through holes in a fence and attacked Abraham, who was on his way home from work.
Nghipandulwa says she received the news while getting ready to go to the funeral of a colleague’s child.
“A phone call came in from one of my relatives, saying my brother was in hospital after being injured by dogs,” she says.
She says the news shocked her.
“This is the saddest news I have heard this year of my brother dying after being bitten by dogs.
“He died a painful death, and I’m shattered,” she says.
Nghipandulwa says the nurses were trying their best to save Abraham.
“When I went to his hospital room, I found him in pain and he told me himself that he was in pain. He was bandaged all over, because his skin was peeled off and bleeding everywhere,” she says.
“I found him in a pool of blood and there was no doctor, and I asked them why they are just looking at someone bleeding severely and they are not doing something, but only putting him on a drip,” she says.
Nghipandulwa says Abraham was breathing heavily.
After a while, she says a senior nurse then told her that they had called a doctor a few minutes ago, but he was not there yet.
“I kept holding him surrounded by my family, and later my family members left to go register a police case against the businesswoman.
“I was talking to my brother, but his breathing was not okay. Later he stopped talking,” she says.
“I called the nurses and pleaded with them to help him. I asked them to put him on the respiratory machine to assist with his breathing.
“He was still in a pool of blood. I then tried to turn him around to assist him, but my brother was already dead. He died in my arms,” Nghipandulwa says.
“He was severely injured by the dogs, especially his arms. All his muscles were torn, and he had so many scratches. His ears were bitten off and he had holes on his neck,” she says.
Nghipandulwa says Abraham told her while he was being attacked, he faked being dead, upon which the dogs let go of him.
Oshakati Intermediate Hospital medical superintendent Ruben Kanime yesterday said he could not ascertain whether the allegations by the family of the hospital staff’s negligence were true, since he was still waiting for an incident report.
“Only then can I ascertain whether it’s true or not, but I have heard the allegations from the family,” he said.
Nghipandulwa says Abraham was a good brother.
“He was able to assist us as family members, especially his mother and two children. We lost a good man forever. We are still seeking justice for my brother, and the case is in the hands of the police,” she says.
The family has indicated that they were planning to sue the businesswoman for not keeping her dogs inside her premises. Nghipandulwa says she was saddened by the fact that the dogs’ owners did not bother to visit Abraham in the hospital.
“They showed no empathy, and their shop was still open. Before he died, he gave his whole testimony to the doctors, because he was able to speak,” she says.
‘PAY FUNERAL EXPENSES’
Abraham’s cousin, Albertina Nghipandulwa, says the family wants the owner of the dogs to pay for his funeral.
Nghipandulwa says Abraham explained his whole ordeal to his family at the hospital.
“He said he was fighting the dogs, but the dogs overpowered him. He said the dogs were trying to attack his mouth.
“He pretended to have died. That’s when they left him. Had he not done that they would have killed him on the spot,” Nghipandulwa says.
About seven family members met with police officers at the Oshakati Police Station on Sunday evening.
The family asked to have the dogs’ owner arrested.
Simon Jafet (25), also a security guard at Oshakati, was attacked by three dogs yesterday morning while on his way home.
He told journalists yesterday that while on his way home, he saw three dogs running towards him and quickly loaded his work gun.
“I fell to the ground and one of the dogs bit my thigh. I was scared because the incident happened in the blink of an eye.
“In the process of fighting with them I managed to fire a shot, and that is when they ran away,” Jafet said.
He was then rushed to Oshakati Intermediate Hospital where he received medical attention.
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) at Oshana on Sunday on its social media pages said people should research a specific breed of dog before getting them as pets.
“Properly fed and trained dogs will not attack unless commanded, and now the dogs must suffer again because of human negligence,” the SPCA wrote on Facebook.
‘WE LOST A GOOD GUARD’
Michael Bingham, Rubicon Security’s Oshakati manager, where Abraham worked, initially said he was upset about the incident and described Abraham as a “very good guard”.
“I will also go to the police, because those kinds of dogs should not be allowed to run free on the street. Ruben is a very good guard. I am very unhappy,” he said over the weekend.
When he was later informed that Abraham had died, he was stunned and said the company would be opening a murder case with the police against the owner of the dogs.