By the time he got to Aku Street, he could not find his friend. He then decided to cross over to Edinburgh Roundabout to recharge his phone and call him. He never made that call. Rather, he found himself on a journey into a thick bush at Akokwa, Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State, where he was to be offered to the gods as sacrifice.
Two months after the traumatic experience from which God saved him, Eze is still in shock and has found it difficult to believe that he could have died three months ago. The following is Eze Obasi’s story as told by him.
“It was a Sunday and I came out at the popular Edinburgh Roundabout, (the home of newspapers and vendors) in central Enugu and I saw one man who told me he was looking for a mechanic that would help fix his car. I told him I am a mechanic and requested to know where the vehicle was. He said it was parked at the WTC junction nearby, so I went and brought some tools and followed him.
“By the time we got there, I discovered that there were four young men. I opened the bonnet of the car, a Mercedes Benz V-Boot, which was bearing a government number plate. I stood in front of the bonnet and by then all the four men were by my side. I asked them what was wrong with the car and they said it wasn’t starting, so I bent over to check the engine.
“In the split of a second, I discovered that a substance had been blown into my face and had entered my eyes. I screamed ‘my eyes oh’! And just as I struggled to regain balance and clear my face, the men guided me into the car, which sped off. Before we got to the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, UNEC, gate, I was already feeling sleepy and soon slept off.
“When I regained consciousness, I discovered that I was in a bush and it was later that I found out that I had been taken to somewhere in Akokwa, in the Ideato area of Imo State. I was very weak but was able to notice a group of young men inside a room nearby. It was then I said some prayers telling God that I only tried to help people in need and that in my town such gesture does not attract curse or condemnation.
“About an hour later, it was very dark and noise started coming from the room and a red curtain on the door began to shake. Suddenly someone came from behind the curtains holding something like a bottle that had a blinking light. He ran the light through my body from head to toe and went back. When he got close to the curtain, he asked who brought me to that place. He turned round and used the bottle to hit me and immediately I regained full consciousness. But as I tried to get up, I realized that I was tied to a bench. Three of them came forward and untied me and led me through the bush to a point where the men touched me and immediately disappeared and I started struggling on my own to find a way out of the bush.
“It was very late by the time I got to the main road. I didn’t know where I was but I continued moving until I saw a woman. I asked her where that place was and she said it’s Akokwa in Imo State and asked who brought me to that place. I told her my story and she directed me to go straight on till I got to a junction. She said one of the roads leads to Aba-Port Harcourt road and that the other leads to Arondizuogu, while the third leads to Nnewi. She advised me to take the route towards Nnewi that I would see a vehicle that would take me to Anambra.
“I told her that I didn’t have any money on me and she brought out N500 and gave to me. I asked her how I would see her again to return her money and the woman asked me to go first; that I didn’t realize what God had done for me. “I boarded a vehicle and in the bus I narrated my story. The driver who took me to Anambra did not take a dime from me. I only paid a fare from Anambra to Enugu. And from New Market where the bus dropped me at about 12 midnight, I found my way back to my house at Oraifite Street.”
It wasn’t the end of his ordeal.
Weeks after the ugly experience, Eze continued to hear strange voices and noise similar to the ones he heard coming from the mysterious house in the bush he was taken to at night.
“After narrating my story to people, I continued to hear those strange noises and languages which I didn’t understand. It always happened when I was alone. There was a language they were speaking there which I didn’t understand. So, it kept reverberating until my colleagues took me to a prayer house for prayers and thanksgiving, since then I stopped hearing the strange voices and noises .”
It was difficult for Eze to recall what those voices were saying. The only thing he remembered was the voice that said ‘young man, go! go! go!’
He recalled that after some incantations that the man who appeared to be their leader chanted, he said they brought the wrong person and that he should therefore, be taken away immediately.
Describing the scenario inside the bush, Eze noted that a house was built there probably for ritual purposes. He said it has a red curtain and the ritualists wore blue uniforms. He described the room as a large one with members whom, he said, tied pieces of clothing round their heads with a cross on their foreheads. They were about 18 in number.