Did you know the Moremi Ajasoro Statue of Liberty is the tallest single statue of a woman in Africa at 42 feet tall?
Moremi Ajasoro, Princess of the Yoruba was a figure of high significance in the history of the Yoruba people of West Africa. Born a princess, Queen Moremi was a courageous queen who is fabled to have contributed to the deliverance of the Yoruba tribe from oppression.
At a time in ancient Yoruba land, the people of Ile-Ife people were enslaved by a neighbouring tribe called the Ìgbò (forest) people. These Ìgbò were considered to be as powerful as demi-gods because they conducted regular raids on the people of Ife.
Upon devising a strategy, Moremi visited the Spirit of the river Esimirin and vowed to make the greatest sacrifice possible if she could discover the strength of the Forest people and save her kinsmen.
She went to a place that was raided frequently, and allowed herself to be captured. Eventually, her beauty attracted the Ìgbò ruler who made her his anointed queen.
She was also very confident and skillful so it was not long before she won the trust and affection of the King and people in Ìgbò land.
This gave her the access she needed to familiarise herself with the secrets of their army — in preparation for battle, the Ìgbò would cover themselves from head to toe with Ekan grass and bamboo fibers.
If someone were to pass amongst the Ìgbò warriors with a torch, they would be defeated.
After she discovered their secrets, she escaped to Ile-Ife to reveal them to the Yoruba army. The Yoruba people used Moremi’s privileged information to finally defeat the Ìgbò people in battle. Queen Moremi is recognised by the Yoruba people because of this bravery and celebrate her selflessness with the Edi Festival because she gave up her son, Olurogbo, to the Esimirin deity in order to fulfil her end of the bargain.
To this day, the Yoruba people mourn with her and hold her in the highest esteem of any women in the Kingdom.
Queen Moremi has been immortalized in several ways with books about her, public places named after her, and a statue of her erected in 2016 by Oba Ogunwusi in the Ife palace.
The 42 feet statue which is the tallest statue in Nigeria, and the fourth tallest in Africa was unveiled by the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi in the Ife palace in Osun State, Nigeria in 2016.
Source – Pulse Nigeria
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