Prime Minister and His Cronies Eat Man

Hans Hillewaert/Creative Commons

Crocodiles, led by a large specimen named Prime Minister, killed and ate their 70-year-old keeper during a show for tourists. 

The Nation - Crocodiles devour zookeeper in Cote d'Ivoire

"Toke regularly entertained guests, both local and international, by moving around the crocodiles and lifting their tails for memorial photos. 

According to the newspaper, Toke had gone into the lake to feed the crocodiles and alligators at 5pm on Monday, when one of the crocodiles held his long shirt.

``The old man, according to the eyewitnesses, waved the crocodile aside, but the biggest and oldest among the crocodiles, known as ``Prime Minister’’,  opened its mouth and seized him.

``The animal threw him into the water and started tearing him into shreds to the consternation of the many guests by the lake, who were enjoying the end of Ramadan.''"

Thanks to Croconut for the news tip. 


  1. Consternation seems to be a rather passive descriptive for something of this nature. And I hope I am not the only one who sees the irony in the fact that they named this croc "Prime Minister". That is a far better descriptive than consternation, methinks. (Dee)

  2. The word "enjoying" is also curiously employed here. As I understand it, Ramadan is a fast. Clearly the croc was not observing the tradition.

  3. I have to say "Prime Minister" sounds far too egalitarian for a croc even if it hadn't eaten somebody: King, Caesar, Emperor, Pharaoh, Majesty, Monarch, Sultan--I can only assume that there is a word in some African language (I don't know which one that would be in the Ivory Coast) that translates roughly as "Prime Minister" and sounds a little less bureaucratic and more like something you would call a creature with absolute power of life and death.

  4. James, that reminds me--have you ever read an old short story about a shark possessed by a Roman emperor? I've been trying to remember who wrote this story and of course everybody thinks I'm nuts (moreso than usual).

  5. I haven't--but if the title hits you, let me know. That sounds like one I could dig into.

  6. It's tormenting me. I'll let you know if I find the answer.


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