Ethiopians celebrate man’s ‘resurrection’
Villagers in Ethiopia are celebrating the “resurrection” of a man who was thought to be dead.
Hirpha Negero, a father of five, was pronounced dead on Tuesday at around 10:30 local time (07:30 GMT).
According to local tradition in the remote village in Sibu Sire district in the central Oromia region, a gun was shot twice to mark his passing and as a sign for villagers to come to a funeral.
Within an hour, village undertaker Etana Kena’a had placed Mr Hirpha in a coffin ready for the funeral proceedings later in the day.
However, during the funeral, at around 15:30 local time, mourners heard knocking from inside the coffin.
‘‘People were shocked and ran away, I couldn’t get anyone to help me,” Mr Etana said, explaining that when he opened the coffin Mr Hirpha needed assistance.
The “resurrected” man told the BBC what he had experienced inside the coffin: “I heard someone crying. I was suffocating and trying to tear away the shroud. I was so weak, unable to speak out.”
Then he said he managed to start calling, “Is there anybody around?”
After the initial shock, the burial ceremony then turned into a celebration.
The undertaker, who is also Mr Hirpha’s uncle, said: “I have buried more than 50 or 60 bodies. I have never anything seen like this before. He seemed to be dead.”
Mr Hirpha said he had had visions when he was unconscious of “a beautiful green place” where a man dressed in white told him to “go back”.
Dr Birra Leggese told the BBC that Mr Hirpha had probably been in a “deep coma”.
A couple of months ago in the same area of Oromia region a self-proclaimed prophet made the headlines when he tried to resurrect a corpse three days after he was buried to no avail.