While it may be too hasty to describe Olori Wuraola Ogunwusi, wife of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, as a feminist, what you can’t take away from her is her uncommon frankness, particularly on issues that are dear to her heart.
Recently, while speaking at the Emerging Women’s Forum in Maryland, U.S., she declared, matter-of-fact, that she did not believe in the clamour for gender equity, adding that ‘‘we can’t be equal, we can’t be men. We have our roles to play here, a very pivotal one.”
To underscore her conviction and seriousness, she highlighted the powerful roles women play and urged them to tap into their innate powers to reach ‘‘extraordinary heights’’, rather than fighting for power with their male counterparts. Although her call was received with mixed feelings, those close to her maintained that she had only given the world a slice of her sterling qualities. Think of an emerging activist and her name will fit perfectly into the description.
Interestingly, this woman of substance, who was once vilified by her traducers after she got married to the respected monarch in an elaborate wedding, is also said to be an epitome of simplicity and artlessness, an attribute that is a rarity among some privileged beings or people of her social class.
Society People gathered that the woman of substance had, on several occasions, exhibited her humility in the public to the amazement of all. Some call this disarming simplicity, while others describe it simply as geniality. In such a short period of time, Olori Wuraola founded her Queen of Ile-Ife Foundation, an organisation that has already put the women of Ife to work through Project Siwaju. QIIF teaches women artisan trade skills to make high quality products such as soaps, accessories and household products from locally sourced materials, empowering these women with the business skills to take care of themselves and their families. The women of Project Siwaju have been trained in the craft of tie-dying to create traditional scarves, garments and bags. Proceeds of the sale of these products are invested into their homes, families and business. As revealed Project Siwaju is enabled through The Queen of Ile-Ife Foundation’s provision of small business microloans and business management training.
A woman on a mission, Olori Wuraola’s humility and desire for a strong community and humanity development has endeared her to the hearts of many in the ancient city.


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