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 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,” Etana said, explaining that when he opened the coffin 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 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.”
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 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.