Tooro King Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru IV has mourned the passing of 10-year-old lion Letaba killed just after gracing his Friday Empango celebrations in Fort Portal.
“Deeply saddened to learn of the unfortunate death of Letaba the Lion who had been brought to Tooro for #24Empango celebrations,” said Oyo on Saturday.
“I had personally met him severally and he was very exciting to be around,” the young monarch added.
Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (UWEC) executive director, Dr James Musinguzi said Letaba escaped from his crate on the way from Fort Portal when the vehicle got a minor accident.
The lion entered a nearby animal farm at Kalenga Village, Mubende District.
Letaba had killed three pigs and one cow before the conservation team put him out of action.
Letaba, meaning happiness in Zulu, was brought to Entebbe Zoo in April 2015.
He flew aboard South Africa Airways from Lion Park, South Africa.
He replaced Kibonge brought to the centre in 1992 from Kenya who had passed on due to old age.
Letaba valued at Shs35m is survived by three lionesses [wives] and three cubs [offspring].
Letaba’s successor is called Africa. The other two are Mzuri and Paradise.