Back from the dead, but not for long:
- Hirpha Negero was left inside a coffin for hours before villagers heard knocking
- Undertaker Etana Kena said people ran away and he was forced to open coffin
- After the initial shock, the burial ceremony quickly turned into a celebration
- But Mr Kena has buried Mr Negero for a second time after his death last week
An Ethiopian man who was nearly buried alive after villagers thought he had died has passed away two months after the ordeal.
Hirpha Negero was placed in a coffin in November last year, where he lay for five hours before villagers heard him knocking from inside.
A funeral procession had already begun, but Mr Negero was desperate to be heard and bashed at the lid.
Recalling the harrowing ordeal, he said: ‘I heard someone crying. I was suffocating and trying to tear away the shroud. I was so weak, unable to speak out.’
And during the funeral, held in the East African country, he managed to start calling, ‘Is there anybody around?’
The village undertaker Etana Kena responded to his calls, but said people were so scared by the apparent resurrection that they ran away and he had to open the coffin alone.
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’.
The same undertaker buried Mr. Negero for the second time on Thursday, one day after he died.
He said that this time he was certain his nephew was dead because he had witnessed his long sickness.