Saturday, January 2

Nigerian Builds ‘Biggest’ Statue of Christ the Redeemer in Africa

A Nigerian businessman is set to unveil what he says is Africa's largest statue of Jesus, describing it as a symbol of peace in a country wracked by Islamist insurgency. Obinna Onuoha commissioned the 8.53 metre (28 foot) tall "Jesus de Greatest" statue in 2013, hiring a Chinese company to carve it out of white marble.
Standing barefoot with arms outstretched, the 40 ton statue will tower over St. Aloysius Catholic Church in the mainly Christian village of Abajah in Nigeria's southeastern state of Imo. "It's going to be the biggest statue of Jesus on the continent," said Onuoha, the 43-year-old chief executive officer of an oil and gas distribution company.
"Definitely pilgrims will come." Around 1,000 people are expected to attend the statue's unveiling on New Year's Day. Onuoha said he has contacted the police just to be sure that it is not attacked or vandalised. Nigeria, Africa's largest country with 170 million people, is split between a more prosperous Christian south and a poor Muslim north -- an uneasy balance that is sometimes a source of tension.

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