The Primate and Founder of the Glory Church of Christ, Egor, on the outskirts of Benin, Apostle Tommy Yisa Aika, is known for his spot predictions on the Nigeria national soccer team, the Super Eagles. The 76-year-old Esan, Edo State-born seer has on various occasions claimed to be the pillar behind some of the chains of successes achieved by the team. In this exclusive interview with[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]
, the seer also stated that 2018 is Nigeria’s last chance to win World Cup. Excerpts:
How and when did you start predicting the outcome of Super Eagles matches?
It all started in 2002 when God revealed to me to go and read Amos 3 verse 7 which says that God does nothing without revealing his secret to his servant who’s a prophet.
The following night I had another vision where God told me to read the book of Luke 1 verse 32 – 37. Then Luke chapter 19 verse 10. This gave me the authority to write to the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) as the football body was then known to demand for US $15,000 to commence prayer sessions that will make my prediction that we’ll qualify us for the Mundial come to reality.
The officials of the FA gave me the go-ahead to do the special prayers. There were three matches left for the Super Eagles to qualify for the Mundial. The first game was an away match with Sudan. We defeated them by a 4 goals to zero margin, irrespective of the support that the Sudanese president gave to his team telling his countrymen to go on 7 days fasting for them.
The Nigerian team was led by Coach Shuaibu Amodu in line with my prophetic advice. We beat Liberia that was before then leading the group two goals to nil and also defeated Ghana 3 – 0.
After the Super Eagles miraculously qualified for the World Cup the football administrators disobeyed God in line with my vision that Amodu should be in charge of the national team. They dumped Amodu for Coach Festus Onigbinde. That was how we played woefully at the 2002 World Cup finals.
In 22nd December 2003, I was at the NAFDAC headquarters in Abuja to see Dora Akunyili of blessed memory (the agency, NFF and FRSC were neighbours) to give her a message from God. But she was not on seat. So, I decided to use the opportunity to see Chief Taiwo Ogunjobi, who was then a topshot of the NFA and whom I had known since his days with Julius Berger FC of Lagos. Then I discussed the issue of the Africa Cup of Nations coming up in Tunisia in 2004.
I told him Cameroon that had all along been our nemesis would be our stumbling block at the tournament. I got his consent to do the needful with an agreement that I will be entitled to the equivalent of a player’s bonus if Super Eagles emerged victorious.
We defeated the Cameroonians by 2 goals to 1. However, Ogunjobi reneged in his promise despite the fact that three of the players were sent out of camp for misconduct and thus the bonus that one of them was entitled to could have been given to me.
After the victory the President of the supporters club, Rafiu Ladipo, was saying that the members of the club turned to prayer warriors for the outcome of the match. Since Ladipo could make such a claim I decided to stay away from the Super Eagles so that he could achieve his plans for the team. Thus from that period to 2009 I had nothing to do with the team.
I came back in September 2009 when I predicted that despite our dismal performance we were going to qualify for the 2010 World Cup with two matches remaining and that God has made it known to me that Nigeria will be the first country in Africa to lift the trophy.
Not long after that the late President Umaru Yar ‘Adua set up a Presidential Task Force (PTF) headed by the then Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi with the assignment of making sure that we qualified for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
The players condemned their coach saying that they have no confidence in him. While Amaechi lambasted the NFF, we were able to qualify for the tournament. Unfortunately, despite my prophecy that we can only win the World Cup with indigenous coaches the NFF employed a foreign coach to handle the team. This affected our performance.
What is the chances of Nigeria qualifying for Russia 2018 World Cup and also doing well at the Mundial proper?
God has told me that the 2018 World Cup tournament is Nigeria’s last chance to win the prestigious trophy. And that Professor Yemi Osinbajo, the Acting President, is in good stead to make it happen and that’s the reason for his elevation to his present position apart from the fact that God wants to use him to unite the people.
There is however a caveat that we should not employ a foreign coach. The prophecy is very loud and clear. We should not let a foreign coach lead our team to the tournament. God cannot be mocked neither will His words come back to Him without achieving His purpose.
I will participate in the spiritual aspect of selecting three coaches and two financiers to be attached to the team. The process of the spiritual selection of the coaching crew will involve a girl not older than 7 years picking the three coaches and the two financiers through a lucky dip. One of the coaches would be given the responsibility of coaching the team. The second coach would be saddled with the responsibility of training the midfielders. Then the third will be assigned to training the defenders and goalkeepers.
As per the two financiers, one will be mandated to cater for the footballers while the other would be in charge of the officials. All these will be done in the presence of the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo and two other prominent personalities – Generals (Rtd) Theophilus Danjuma and Abdulsalam Abubakar.
Of course, I and my team of prayers warriors would be doing the needful in the background. We should not allow this opportunity to slip from us. It’s our very last chance. We have to act fast.
How has been your relationship with the nation’s football administrators?
I must be honest with you by saying it has not been smooth sailing. I have been harassed and insulted by some of the nation’s football administrators. Somebody like late Stephen Keshi when he was the coach of the Super Eagles behaved rudely towards me when I met him at the team’s camp in Bolton Hotel, Wuse, Abuja. He told the hotel security guards to bounce me out of the place.
This led to my being physically harassed and injured. Chief Taiwo Ogunjobi mandated me to pray fervently for the Super Eagles qualification to the World Cup finals during his tenure as the Secretary General of the NFF with a promise to compensate me and my prayer warriors. Till date he has yet to fulfill his promise.
I have met with Amaju Pinnick, the current President of the NFF but he gave a cold shoulder. All these have not discouraged me from doing what God has given me the mandate to do. I am emphatic that until we harken to God’s words we will continue to grope in the dark. Our vision of lifting the World Cup trophy will remain just a mere dream.
Can you share with us your experience on your relationship with the management of the defunct Julius Berger FC of Lagos?
My relationship with the management of the Julius Berger FC of Lagos, which was one of the prominent outfits in Nigeria in the 90s and early 2000 was very robust. I first met Chief Taiwo Ogunjobi when he was a member of the management team of Julius Berger FC under the chairmanship of Chief Daniel Idama. My relationship with the team started when a voodoo man recommended that the management should do some fetish things so that the club would be able to perform well on the field of play. I met Chief Idama and countered the recommendations telling him that he should embrace prayers instead which he accepted.
What’s your reaction to the recent apologies made by the Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung to the recent Super Eagles poor show?
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Barr. Solomon Dalung, is only playing to the gallery by apologising for our poor performance in football. Nigerians do not need his apology at this time and would not accept it. Rather, he should do the needful. On February 27, 2016, I sent a proposal to him on the way forward for Nigerian football but he has not deemed it fit to give me a response. That is sad.
The arms of the Almighty are bigger than most people can imagine and He is abundantly able to give us succour if we humble ourselves and keep to His commandments.