My trouble started when I took a bus ride from a few kilometres from my house. They say as the year runs to an end, all kind of things happen, particularly in the spirit realm. I know some people will say, ‘please, don’t talk about spirit or God here but my dear, there are spirits and there is a God!’
I’m an elder of the Church of Cherubim and Seraphim, last year on November 3rd, I got a call from one of our church members that one of her children was sick and in the hospital. As an elder in the church, I decided to go and visit this child at the hospital at Mowe, somewhere close to the Redeemed Camp. I live in Magboro, at the outskirts of Lagos. Magboro is just like three bus stops away from where I am going, so I boarded a bus with the mind of dropping at Redeemed bus stop. There was nothing about the bus or the other passengers that made me think this ride would almost lead to my death.
When we got close to where I would normally get down, the driver did not slow down. I kept shouting, “O wa, o! Redeem wa o!”
You can imagine my surprise when both the driver and the conductor just ignored me, by this time, the other passengers, too began to shout. We all sensed that something was wrong with the driver and conductor. In my mind, I said, “Ye pa! I don enter one chance o.”
They drove us straight towards Ibadan and threatened to stab us if we made any noise. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. There were about nine of us in the bus and we were begging them, some were shouting “Blood of Jesus!” some were just crying. In fact, there was a young girl, she was in her school uniform, she said she was going to write exam and began to struggle with the conductor, she wanted to jump out of the speeding bus. The conductor beat her to nonsense and wounded her badly. The rest of us couldn’t even intervene, maybe if we had, we would at least have overpowered the conductor and the driver would have no choice but to park and let us off.
I have never known such fear in my life, then we approached a road block, there were policemen there and I said a prayer of thanksgiving to God because we all started shouting when we saw them. As soon as the bus stopped in front of the police, they collected something from the conductor and waved the bus away. We were shouting, “Help! Help us, these people are ritualists, help us.”
Police just ignored us and faced front as if we were not even in the bus.
That was when I just started seeing my life run fast in front of me. I said, “Ha, so this is how I will die?” I saw my children’s faces, I saw my wife crying, I saw my church people coming to visit my family and consoling them. I saw everything!
We were driving on the bush path for more than two hours. It was very far inside and I just said to myself, “How will anyone even locate us here? Who will ever think I will ever be found here?”
So I started making peace with my God. I asked for His forgiveness for all my sins, I prayed for all of us in the bus, I cried with everyone. I just gave up.
When we got to the final destination, it was an uncompleted building right in the middle of the bush. We were all dragged inside and asked to remove our clothes. I saw piles and piles of school uniforms, school shoes, small sizes and big sizes. I saw different types of uniforms too, police, army, all kinds of uniforms.
I was still praying. As I prayed, one of the ritualists said to me, “I can help you escape.”
Just like that? Jesus!
He was a boy of about 20 years old. I still wonder how he got himself involved with the other ritualists. Anyway, he said I should pretend like I want to shit hot shit. And that was exactly what I did. I pretended that if I don’t go out now, now, I would spray shit all over the place. So they asked him, this boy to take me to the bush to shit.
But instead, as my God would have it, this boy just led me through another path and told me to continue walking far until I get to a village, he said I would find help.
I walked for more than one hour. I was even afraid another set of ritualists would catch me because I did not meet a single soul. But after sometime, I saw a village, I asked for help and one okada rider gave me a lift to the nearest town. That was when I realised I was somewhere in Oyo State.
The funny thing is, I think the villagers know that there are bad people in that area but nobody can do anything, one of them was just saying, “Thank your God, thank your God.”
They gave me money for transport and that was how I eventually got home to my family around midnight. It was after I got home, that the real shit started. I was just purging and purging. It seems my body just wanted to get rid of something but I still thank God, it was God who helped me.
*Please note, these are true Newspaper reports extended into longer narratives; the real names have been changed to protect the identities of those involved. Edited by Peju Akande