From Abel Leonard, Lafia
Godwin Ugeelu Amadu, father of seven and native of Gidan Angalu, Toto Local Government, Nasarawa State, died in September 2022, aged 59.
The shock; three days after he was pronounced dead and at the peak of his burial arrangements, he reportedly shook off the shackles of death, walked out of his casket and resumed his life to the bewilderment of all.
Till date, the bizarre story of his “resurrection” has been hard to swallow to residents who suspected foul play. But to Amadu and family members, the story is factual. They claimed sympathizers thronged to his graveside to pay their respect to the deceased on that morning.
Amadu was hale and hearty, not known to suffer from any ailment. He only began to show signs of a troubled health in the middle of the year. By July, his ill- health was narrowed to chest and leg pains, both of which were treated with orthodox medicine, being himself a native doctor.
Not long afterwards, he was taken to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Keffi. He was evaluated, admitted and discharged two weeks after, only for the chest pain to return days after. He passed away, as they claimed, in a private medical facility on September 5, 2022, and wheeled to the mortuary same day.
Days after, he was reported to have “resurrected.” He converted to Christianity, driving a reasonable traffic of devotees who are attracted to his amazing story.
His eldest son, Jacob, insisted his father actually died and rose again.
He said he saw the dead body of his father before it was wheeled into the mortuary: “We the (family) advised the hospital not to embalm him because he actually told us repeatedly, not to embalm him when he dies and to bury him immediately and not to put his remains inside a room, not more than three days.
“Because of this, we hurriedly dashed to the village to mobilise our young men to help dig his grave so that we could bury him on the second or third day as he had requested. We took his corpse to the village inside a casket on September 7, 2022, amid tears by relatives and sympathizers.
“While his body was lying in an open roof, where incidentally he normally attended to his patients as a native doctor, we suddenly saw the casket shaking, eventually falling down, with him walking up from the fallen casket.”
Amadu told his story: “My journey to heaven was a tranquil one. I felt very confused about what God had done to me. All I can remember before now is that I lost my memory when I was sick.
“People later gathered in my village to mourn my passing away. The cloud opened up. I saw something like a giant golden satellite, suspended in space.
“I wouldn’t know whether this is what the Bible calls heaven. There, I was greeted by a seven-feet tall angel. He stood in front of the gate.
The angel had a beautiful sword. He wore something like a golden hair.
“As I looked round, I discovered that there were two more angels behind him. They were holding pamphlets and books containing the words of God. The three angels had a brief discussion. They later allowed me into the city of heaven.
“On entering, I met a childhood friend who died 22 years ago. His name was Choko Aguma. He took me round the city where everybody was committed to worshipping God. He indeed asked after so many people. I told him I lost touch with some, some are still alive while others had died.
“About 450 yards from what looks like the throne of God, I was captivated by the sign on the outside that read: ‘Unaccounted blessings and Mercy of God.’
“So, I can comfortably confirm to you that I went to heaven and not hell fire. I have returned successfully with the courage to preach God’s gospel to the end of my life.
“The place is peaceful and quiet. It is filled with myriads of angels who are very tall. There is light everywhere, no darkness. The angels were talking about Jesus Christ all the time.
“There, food is served free. You don’t pay any money for food. It is served free and in large quantity. I wish I never come back to the world.”
However, the state Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) urged Christians to be wary of such tales, debunking his claim as gravely untrue. Its chairman, Reverend Sunday Ennah, stated: “The Bible is very clear that after death, comes judgment.
“If someone ‘dies’ for one, two, three days and comes back to life, he or she was not dead in the first place but was rather unconscious. We would need more facts to ascertain such insinuations. When a man dies, his soul rests in heaven. When Christ comes again, the dead will rise, including the living.
“It is very possible that the man in question fell asleep or was unconscious for a period of time. He did not die but was presumed to have died by the judgment of those immediately around him. Often times, one could be unconscious for days but looking dead and could regain conscious after a while.
“There are many false prophets in the world today. They go about confusing the people, using the resurrection approach to possess wealth. I want to advise Christians to desist from such insinuation.
His claim is unchristian.”
Catholic Father Shenge George said: “That is not the teaching of the Catholic Church. The Church does not believe somebody could die and come back to life. It must be some form of hallucination or an approximate. The teaching of the Church Church does not believe in such insinuations.”
A Pentecostal pastor, Paul Chris Marshin, said: “The resurrection claim is unrealistic. Theologically, the Bible gives a description of what heaven looks like. It is inconsistent with Amadu’s account.
“We don’t need someone to come back from dead to explain that to us.
When the rich man saw Lazarus, he asked Father Abraham to allow Lazarus dip his hand in a water to give him. Abraham responded that there was no need.
“He also asked Father Abraham to send Lazarus back to earth to inform his brothers and sisters on what he was going through for them to repent. He replied that there are many preachers on earth, ‘I don’t need to send another. If they want to repent, they should hear from the ones still alive on earth.’
“It is somewhat surprising that a native doctor died for three days and returned to life. Suddenly, he started describing heaven. I have to see that native doctor and listen to his word and message.
“The Bible said test all spirits and you will see which is true. As a minister, I would advise those encountering him to test his spirit.
“If he is preaching contrary to the message of Christ or contradicting the scriptures, which is what I suspect, then you should flee because he may be of an anti-Christ.”