An Enugu-based herbalist, Emmanuel Udorji, who was shot and wounded by gunmen has shared his experience in the hands of his assailants. Vanguard reports that trouble started recently in the town of Nsukka, Abbi, in Enugu state when the unidentified gunmen invaded the house of a herbalist and rained bullets on him in a bid to kill him. Residents of the area scampered for safety, but the main target of the assault, although hit by several bullets, survived the attack. Speaking at the Ascension Hospital, Nsukka, the herbalist explained how he survived the attack, terming it the most traumatic experience of his life. He said: “My kinsmen convened a meeting of about 12 men and asked me to host it in my residence. I obliged. To my surprise, only three persons showed up for the meeting. But we decided to go on with the meeting as earlier planned.
The meeting was earlier scheduled the previous week. “Later I received a phone call that it had been canceled and rescheduled, unknown to me there was an unseen hand behind the arrangement. The three that attended the meeting were Hyacinth Uchu (aka Yoke), Pastor Nicholas Diara and one other person. We started the meeting around 4pm and closed around 5.30pm. “I was seeing off my guests to the gate with my good friend Chike Ndubuisi when I noticed about eight vehicles with tinted glasses parked outside the gate of my compound. Immediately, about eight individuals dressed in army uniform alighted from one of the vehicles; another six in civilian dresses and three others in Fulani attire were also there. “That was when it dawned on me that something was wrong. And before I could react, they suddenly pointed guns at me and started shooting at me.
There was stampede in my house and those of my neighbours. It was confusion everywhere with my family members shouting for help on top of their voices. Many people ran into bushes. They tied my hands backwards.” In spite of the gunshots, Udorji seemed untouched as the bullets could not penetrate his body. But how did he land in the hospital? He explained further how he was carried off and beaten up by the men when they made the discovery. “When the unknown gunmen realised that their bullets could not kill me, they grabbed and beat me up mercilessly and tightly tied my hands backwards with rope and bundled me into one of the vehicles to an unknown destination.
Along the way, my assailants who were discussing the incident, suddenly took pity on me. “It was then they told me that we were going back to Nsukka and advised me to be careful of my people. I demanded to know what offence I had committed to warrant the unjust treatment but they did not tell me. They took me back to my house around 1pm. I had never seen any of them before and so cannot identify them,” he explained.
Speaking further, Udorji said: “I cannot say exactly whether the gunmen were military men. The only thing was that I was driven to to 82 Division Enugu, though I was not brought down from the vehicle and taken to any office at the army headquarters. “Only thorough investigations will unveil the circumstances surrounding the matter. When the gunmen had gone after bringing me back, my entire family broke down in tears. “I have lodged a complaint with the police at Nsukka. I will definitely petition the Enugu State Commissioner of Police and the Human Rights Commission over the incident. My estate in my village was burnt, vandalised about two years ago. Now they are after my life.”
Confirming the incident, a senior police officer at the area command, Nsukka stated that the matter is being handled to avoid a break down of law and order, adding that police had begun an investigation into the incident.