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A Melbourne woman showed up at her own funeral to surprise the husband who had paid hitmen £3,500 ($7,182) to kill her. 

Noela Rukundo confronted Balenga Kalala, her partner of 10 years, outside the service in her honour. Terrified, he held his head in his hands and asked her:

“Is it my eyes? Is it a ghost,” even touching her shoulder to check she was real.

“Surprise! I’m still alive!” she told him.

Just days earlier, the woman, Noela Rukundo, had been snatched from outside a hotel in Bujumbura, the capital of Burundi, by a group of armed hitmen. She had travelled to the African country with her husband, from their home in Melbourne, Australia, to attend the funeral of a family member.

The strange man grabbed and blindfolded her and drove her to an unfamiliar building. But instead of carrying out the command, the men decided to let her go, telling her that they didn’t believe in killing women.

The men let Rukundo listen in on a call with her husband, in which he could be heard ordering them to kill her.

Kalala was arrested and a year on he has been sentenced to nine years in prison for incitement to murder.