There are reports which just surfaced online that former Golden Eagles Captain/Super Eagles star player, Wilson Oruma, lost his mind for two years while battling with insanity after he was duped by fraudsters introduced to him by a Lagos-based frontline Pentecostal Pastor, (name withheld) whose church (name withheld) is located in the Surulere area of the state.
In a report by New Telegraph Online,Oruma’s travail started in 2012 when the Pastor in question invited the former victorious Golden Eaglets captain to a private meeting in the church to discuss the possibility of investing heavily into what he described as a lucrative business where he promised to invite the mega bucks investors to the church a week later. A date was fixed for this.
It was at the second meeting, it was gathered that the former Atlanta 96 Olympic gold medallists was introduced to some well-dressed gentlemen who were said to be in possession of some oil blocks they were ready to sell to the rich ex-international. Oruma, who acted alone without consultation with any of his lawyers and his close friend, Mr. Emakpor Dibofun, believed the story of the fraudsters and never suspected any foul play as they were introduced by his Pastor.
He was advised to invest heavily so as to yield heavy profit. The two-time African Nations Cup bronze medallist, withdrew funds from all his investments across Europe in three months and withdrew his life savings to ensure he pumped enough money into the oil business. He did not suspect any foul play as the Pastor kept assuring him that, the people are credible and are God fearing business investors.
In all, Oruma paid a whopping N1.2billion into the dedicated bank account given to him to make payments which he did over six months. The ex-soccer star that played alongside Frank Ribery and Samir Nasri in his days at Olympique Marseille FC of France started suspecting foul play when he did not hear from the people again and they failed to pick their mobile phones on days scheduled for important updates. He ran to his Pastor for possible succour and reassurance that all was well, but instead the Pastor rebuffed Oruma and told him that, he was a full-time minister of God who knew nothing about oil business, but only introduced him to those he believed could help make his business empire larger.
The Pastor asked if he was involved in the business dealings all the while and the answer was a capital no. He thus divorced himself from any blames leaving the soccer star to lick his own wounds but he was not strong enough to withstand the attendant psychological pressure. A few weeks after this ordeal, Oruma started behaving funny. He started talking to himself and had hot altercations with his wife at their Victoria Garden City home in Lagos.
It was gathered that, it was after one of the series of altercations with his wife who blamed him for the family’s misfortune and huge loss of money that Oruma busted out of their home in VGC and stormed a popular supermarket where he destroyed valuables. He was wrestled to the floor, with his legs and hands tied to avoid further destruction.
From this day in 2012, Oruma’s unstable mind became pronounced. His close friend, Emakpor with his hands and legs tied took the soccer star to a church in Warri, Delta state for spiritual healing. After destroying valuables in the church, Oruma escaped to his VGC home in Lagos where he continued to disturb residents. It was also learnt that with his unstable mind, he gave out one of his expensive SUVs worth N14million to a friend who speedily drove away the vehicle.
To avoid further embarrassments of VGC residents, Oruma’s family agreed to take him to his Suru-Lere home near Brown Street in Aguda, Lagos where secret treatments continued. He was first taken to the church where he was duped, which was nearby his Aguda home. Here, the culprit pastor after some failed attempts to heal the player advised that he should be taken back home as Oruma had been hit by a strange mental illness which defiled all known treatments.
The ex-international was tied and closely monitored in his Aguda home for over one year as the family sought spiritual healing for him. The player, who started his football career at Tamuno Babes FC of Warri, was not taken to an orthodox mental hospital in his family’s attempt to conceal his ailment from the public.
Oruma suffered untold hardship for two years as his family with the help of his close friend and former teammate, Emakpor Dibofun, took him to number Pentecostal churches in Lagos seeking spiritual healing. The much desired healing eventually came few weeks ago when he was given a clean bill of health as he overcame the mental illness. He has started walking again as the sores on his legs from long period of being tied down in one place are healing fast.
In the words of Oruma’s kid brother, Dominic a former Golden Eaglets and Flying Eagles goalkeeper; “Wilson is recovering fast, he now recognizes his family members and he has returned to his house in VGC under the care of his wife. We are very happy about this. It was not easy seeing him suffer so much in the last two years after his money was taken away. We give God the glory for the gift of healing.
“He has told us not to press charges against the pastor who brought fraudsters to dupe him heavily as he said the incident is now in the past. Another good thing is that all his properties are intact and most of his major investments are doing fine.” Oruma was captain of the Nigeria Under-17 team that won the 1993 FIFA U-17 World Cup where he emerged the tournament’s top goal scorer with six goals. He played 19 international matches over 11 years for Nigeria and was part of the team that participated in the 1998 FIFA World Cup, where he scored in the only appearance he made in the tournament against Paraguay. He was also a part of the squad that won the Olympic gold medal in 1996, a year after he debuted for Nigeria.
He played for the Eagles at the 2002 and 2006 Africa Cup of Nations, finishing both competitions at third place. Oruma played most of his club career in France, after arriving at RC Lens in 1994. He was loaned to Nancy a year after. He returned to Lens and played in their 1997-98 Ligue 1 title campaign.
He moved to Turkish side Samsunspor in 1998 and returned to France one year later to play for Nîmes. In 2000, he was transferred to Swiss side Servette, played two seasons before coming back to France again, where he played until 2009 for Sochaux, Marseille and Guingamp, winning the 2003-04 Coupe de la Ligue with Sochaux and the 2008-09 Coupe de France title with Guingamp. The former Nigerian international announced his retirement from football at the age of 33 on November 26, 2010.
He last played his international football for Kavala FC of Greece, before bidding farewell to football.