How Fraudsters Duped Former Super Eagles Star Wilson Oruma Who Opens Up on Travails

How Fraudsters Duped Former Super Eagles Star Wilson Oruma Who Opens Up on Travails

  • Wilson Oruma was part of the Nigerian team that won gold at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta
  • The 45-year-old once lamented how he was defrauded of all his life savings he had kept for retirement
  • Oruma, who had 19 caps and 3 goals for Nigeria's senior national football team, retired in 2010

A former Nigerian international, Wilson Oruma once narrated how he was defrauded of about N2 billion.

Oruma was part of the Golden Eaglets squad that won the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Japan ’93 and the Dream Team that claimed gold in football at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.

He retired from football in 2010 and eight years later, the former Sochaux of France star fell into the hands of some fraudsters.

Wilson Oruma, Super Eagles, Olympic Games, Atlanta 1996
Wilson Oruma once revealed he was duped by fraudsters to the tune of N1billion. Photo: Olivier Andrivon.
Source: Getty Images

They claimed to have possession of some oil blocks, and the unsuspecting player was made to withdraw all his life savings to invest in the ‘oil business'.

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It is belived Oruma battled with his sanity in 2018. The then-president of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick included him as part of the Nigerian contingent to the FIFA World Cup in Russia, in order for him to mix with people and former colleagues.

Oruma told The Guardian at his Park Inn Hotel in St. Petersburg that same year that it was true he had lost all his savings to people who turned out to be fraudsters.

"I have read several stories in the media since then. Those stories did not emanate from me. They quoted different amounts, which is not correct. I lost close to N2 billion."

Oruma revealed the most painful part of his ordeal was that some of his relations were involved in the fraud incident.

“You can imagine losing such huge amount of money to people you trusted. I pray for them to have a human heart and return my money, even if it is part of it. That is my prayer every day and I know that one day, the hand of God will touch their hearts.”

During his playing days, Oruma was teammates with the likes of Samir Nasri and Franck Ribery at the French club Marseille.

Atlanta '96: Oruma receives credit

Sports Brief earlier reported that former Super Eagles captain Sunday Oliseh has stated that the talent of Wilson Oruma helped the Dream Team win the gold medal for football at the Atlanta 1996 Olympics.

Nigeria came from 3-1 down to beat Brazil 4-3 in the semi-final of the competition. Kanu Nwankwo equalised in the closing seconds, before another sensational strike in extra time helped the Africans qualify for the final on the golden goal rule.

Nwankwo was with the ball when the referee signalled the final whistle, but Oliseh credited the glorious moment to Oruma’s brilliance.