Some residents of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital and birthplace of terrorist group, Boko Haram, are relieving memories of the attacks on their communities by converting spent bullet shells to rings.

Made from either copper, gold, silver or other metals into fashion accessories and marriage bands, rings are symbolic to different cultures around the world.

In northern Nigeria, rings are mostly used as fashion accessories.

For about ten years, Boko Haram terrorists have continued to attack communities in northeast Nigeria killing thousands with dozens and rendered homeless.

Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps have become home to those whose communities ravaged by the war.

Bullets, explosives and landmines are common sights in most of these communities.

As IDPs in Maiduguri return to their communities, local blacksmiths in these areas are converting the empty bullet shells found into rings.

Mohammed Ciroma, a documentary photographer and humanitarian worker, said the rings tell stories of what the communities have had to contend with over the years.

These rings have become a fashion accessory especially amongst young men in the community

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“We went to one settled village in Maiduguri today, to sensitize them on dangers of landmines and other unexploded devices,” he said.

“To my surprise, when they saw the pictures of bullets and other dangerous objects, they said, “we use to make rings with the empty bullet shells. I was like really? I then said let me see the rings that you guys claimed to have made from the bullets shells, three guys showed me the rings on their fingers,” he added.

Security implications

A security expert, John Enahoro, tells that the conversion of bullets to rings could pose as security threat to the country.

He urged the security agencies to discourage the residents from the act.

“Beautiful are these rings may look, it is not good for national security,” Enahoro said.

“When people begin to look for the bullets for the sole purpose of converting the shells to rings, a fashion item, you know that we are in trouble in this country.

“Soon, that would be the case if the trend is not curbed. There are some other substances used to produce bullets that are dangerous to human health. This is a dangerous trend and it should be curbed,” he cautioned.