Whenever I hear the word “security”, I always remember that night. The night I was robbed and prayed for my life like I had never done before. I had gone to visit a friend during the day, we had spent a lot of time catching up and discussing that we didn’t realize it was quite late. But since my friend lived close to me, and I had to go to work the next day, I decided to head home. When I was ready to leave, my friend opted to see me off to my place as it was already getting late and due to the power outage in the area, it was quite dark outside.
As we walked down to my place, I decided to put on my torchlight because the road leading to my place was in bad shape with lots of potholes and bushes at the side. We had walked for a while when we noticed footsteps behind us. Two young men rushed at us and pointed something at us. I was not sure what it was because they ordered us to turn off the torchlight. We wanted to run but one of the men brought out something from his pocket, and it was then it dawned on me that it was a gun. He threatened to shoot us if we tried anything funny. While he was talking to us, the other guy was watching out for him, checking to see if anyone was coming towards our direction. Both of them asked me and my friend to lie down on the road and then began to search our pockets and wallets.
I have heard several stories of people being robbed at gunpoint but I have never experienced it. That night was my first time. It was like a dream and happened so fast that silently I prayed for my life.
After searching our pockets and taking our phones and wallets from us, they took us to an uncompleted building close to the area where they stopped us. I guess they did that for the fear of someone coming and then raising an alarm. When we got to the building, they ordered us to lie down again and started beating us. My friend was very scared and so was I. They beat us so badly that the slaps and punches are still very clear in my mind. One of the men stood at the gate watching out for anyone coming while the other man was beating us. When I tried to plead with him, he slapped me so hard with the gun that I felt dizzy immediately. To be honest, I almost thought of fighting back but then I was not sure if the gun was loaded or not. All sorts of things ran through my mind: What if he kills you? What if he rapes you? Why don’t you endure the beating and continue praying? Since the other guy is watching the gate, maybe you can tackle the other guy and snatch the gun from him? After he slapped me, I just decided to shut up.
After being held hostage for almost an hour in the uncompleted building, they let us go. We did not know what made them disappear all of a sudden but we were so relieved when we did not hear voices screaming at us. It took us almost twenty minutes to stand up from the floor and to fully grasp what just happened to us. After a while, when we were fully convinced they had gone, we stood up and instead of going to my place, we decided to go back to my friend’s place because it was shorter in terms of distance . Even though we lost our phones and wallets, we were so relieved that we were not shot or raped. That night, when we got back to my friend’s place, we could not sleep. My friend was trying to console me because I was in total shock. In the morning, I could not even talk about it to my colleagues. It took me some days to fully process what happened and tell my colleagues I was robbed at gunpoint.
One of the bizarre things though was that no one living close by came to our rescue, maybe they were afraid or maybe they just did not want to be disturbed. This is why security must be one of the top priorities in every country because for me security means freedom from danger, threat, fears and anxiety.