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My Entrepreneurship Journey 3

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Written by   10
1 year ago

I and my friend accepted the Cameroon deal. The deal was worth 700,000 CFA. The figures alone was tempting and having the chance to reach out to youths in another country was an experience I'll never forget. So we got all the needed materials, passports, IDs and so on. Then we planned our trip. We were starters,young, and broke. We couldn't afford a flight, so we planned on travelling by bus. The deal with the Cameroonians was that as soon as we show up, we'll get half of our pay and when we're done, we get our balance. So we booked a bus from Lagos to Uyo. And then we set out very early in the morning.

We travelled from Lagos (South Western Nigeria) up to the west, from the west we linked the Niger+Delta bridge, off to Uyo. It was a sweet experience that day. I had never travelled to the south before, and that day the bus passed through eight different states before reaching its final destination which was Uyo. It was late in the night around past seven when we got to Uyo. We had to sleep at the bus terminal, we were newbies in the town, we tried locating an hotel but it started raining heavily. Hence, we settled for less, we didn't push our luck. So we passed the night at the Uyo bus terminal. The following morning we continued our journey, from Uyo to Ikom Calabar.

When we arrived at Ikom, a driver from the Cameroon organization was already waiting to get us across the border and off to Cameroon, but we had to stop at the country's border. We went to the immigration office, we did health check, presented our passports which was stamped after answering series of questions and then we were given yellow cards. Which was the country's permit, we continued our smooth journey through the mountains of Cameroon, I'll never forget the beauty landscape. Most of their roads was on a hill or Mountain and the car kept on going in circles like we were on a rollercoaster ride😅

Darkness was creeping in, and my mother has always warned me to be wary of the dangers that wanders at night, but I didn't listen. I couldn't tell the driver to pull over, so we could rest and continue our journey the next day. Nemesis caught up with us, and we were abducted on the highway around 10pm. We were abducted by militants, they called themselves Ambazonians. They called themselves freedom fighters. Meeting them was a horrible experience. They were armed, their guns were corked and they threatened to fire us, kill us, end us, and burn our corpse as well as our car. So there would be no traces.

They spoke french to us but we couldn't respond, we didn't know how to speak french. The driver translated to us then we responded in English. We were asked to get out of the car, we kneeled on the highway with our lugages by our side. My partner was hit on the face when we couldn't answer their questions. We were confused. The atmosphere was freezing... we were crying, shivering and pleading.

Ambazonians: So you guys are foreigners, show us your passport!

I and my friend: we were shivering but we managed to hand over our passports.

Ambazonians: Oh. So you're Nigerians, I hate Nigerians, Nigerians denied us our freedom in the year 19 blah blah blah..

I and my friend: we pleaded for our life.

Ambazonian: Say your last prayer, and points a gun towards us.

Our driver was a Cameroonian, so he spoke french to them. He pleaded on our behalf and told them we knew nothing about the history. We haven't been born when that happened between Nigeria and Cameroon. I was only 18 and my friend was 22. They asked us for money, and our phones but we had already his them in the car before we met them on the road.

Luckily the head of the organizing committee called the driver, then the driver gave him the news but before the driver could explain further his phone was seized by the Ambazonians. They spoke to the organizer, they requested for money or else they'd kill us. After long negotiation, they took us into our car, put on the car warmer/ heater and sat beside us. They said they'd like to know what brought us to Cameroon. I was so scared, I couldn't utter a word, I could only make sounds and nod my head. My partner told them everything about our business and they became annoyingly amazed. They said it's impossible, that how could two small boys form Nigeria, travel all the way to Cameroon just to teach floor designs. They requested for our IDs, chemicals and tools, which we showed to them when we opened our luggage.

At 11pm we were still in our car, parked beside the highway, and surrounded by hoodlums calling themselves freedom fighters (Ambazonians). They were waiting for the ransoms to be paid into their account. They had requested for about 180,000 CFA in order to free us. Shortly another car was stopped. The passengers were all Cameroonian and they gave the militants some money and they were allowed to pass. I watched with tears in my eyes, reminiscing of my mother's warnings about travelling late at night.

The Ambazonians got the alert, then we were released, they said we would meet again and I immediately said a mixture of prayer for myself and curses for all of them, for ruining my first day in Cameroon, and my first entrepreneurship trip. The driver collected all our papers from them, started the engine, then zoomed off at high speed. I will never forget what happened to me that night. The driver had to take us to his house, he fed us, we just couldn't sleep that night, different thoughts running through our minds. Perhaps the driver was involved, or he was going to kill us...

We couldn't sleep until day break.And we finally competed our journey, when we got to the organizers house.

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To be continued...

Stay tuned ❇️

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