How God Saved me from Nigerian Army Gunshots in Orlu

Image obtained from SaharaReporters, 18th April, 2022

Please everybody should advise his brothers and friends against plying Orlu roads if there is any mark or tattoo on his body.

My tour through Orlu to view the military operations on the road was an eye-opener to the dehumanizing situation that the Orlu people are going through in the hands of the Nigerian military.

The activities of the soldiers at the Orlu military checkpoints speaks for itself the dangers an average Igbo man using the road stands to face at the slightest move.

The artmy arrange themselves in a manner that every motorist who gets to the checkpoint discharges his passengers and they are made to file up in an organized queue as they trek naked for the soldiers to inspect their chests and backs.

If anybody is found with any sense of razor marks or a tattoo of any kind on the chest or back, such a person is tagged an "Unknown gunman" or ESN. To the soldiers, the best tester to prove whether such a person is fortified or not is a good number of gunshots.

I am Igbo, and anybody who grew up in the Igbo traditional setting from late 1990s down has one mark or another either on the chest or on the back. These marks were given by some communities every year to protect people from invading diseases and sometimes poisons. 

I too had all these marks around my body. The luck I had, travelling through the Orlu Military dead trap, was that all my marks had diminished. They could not censor the ones on my face because, maybe "Odeshi" is not marked on the chin.

Now, imagine how many people whom the soldiers have killed ignorantly. The last time I asked, I was told that the military men do not have time for any explanation. That means that anyone who's marks have not diminished, like mine, stands condemned to death by the military gunshots. 

This perhaps was why all the inhabitants of that area where the army pitched their tents in Orlu have vacated their homes to God-knows-where.



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