KUANTAN: A three-year-old boy had a fright of his life when a giant monitor lizard that got into his father’s office attacked him.
In the incident that took place at a resort in Kampung Salang, Pulau Tioman yesterday, Faliq Iman Mohd Fadhirul Izman's right foot was bitten by the 1.5m-long reptile.
His father, Mohd Fadhirul Izwan Mat Saridan, said his son was playing with a mobile phone below the registration counter.
"Not long after, I heard him crying. I rushed out from my office and saw the lizard biting my son's right foot.
"I tried to chase it away but it would not budge and continue to bite Faliq. I then stepped on the reptile twice before it finally let go and ran off," said the 34-year-old father who works as manager at the family-owned resort.
Mohd Fadhirul said he immediately wrapped Faliq's feet and took him to Klinik Kesihatan Tekek where a doctor said the injury was serious and the victim would need treatment at the hospital.
Faliq, he said, looked traumatised by the incident and kept repeating "Faliq takut biawak" (Faliq is scared of lizard) every time he was asked about the incident.
Mohd Fadhirul said this was not the first time the reptile had entered the resort, and every time, the staff would chase it away.
"Maybe it was looking for food. But I didn't expect it to attack a human and unfortunately, my son was the victim," he said, adding that Faliq is now receiving treatment at a private hospital in Kuantan.
This is the second incident involving a monitor lizard on the island.
On Sept 23, 2014, an eight-month-old baby was mauled and dragged by the reptile out of her quarters at one of the resorts on the island.
Her mother, Nor Raudhah Maisarah Abdullah, had to repeatedly hit the reptile with a stick before using her bare hands to push the reptile away, while it was trying to drag the baby girl into the nearby bushes.
A few days after the incident, the Pahang Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) director Khairiah Mohd Shariff said they would conduct a culling exercise in Kampung Tekek to rid the village of water monitor lizards.
However, Khairiah said it would not be a full-scale exercise but merely to reduce its population by between 10 per cent and 15 per cent.