[PHOTOS] Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove: US Mission kicks off shrine preservation project

The United States Mission in Nigeria has started the documentation and conservation project for the Busanyin Shrine at the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove.

The process was launched in Osogbo, the state capital, on Thursday, a statement by the US Consulate General, Public Affairs Section said.

The statement said the US Mission to Nigeria has a long history of supporting the protection and preservation of Nigerian cultural heritage through the Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP).

According to the statement, the US Mission’s implementing partner CyArk, a California-based nonprofit, is leading the 3D documentation of the Busanyin Shrine, one of eight monuments within the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove.

During a kick-off event at the UNESCO world heritage site, US Consul General Claire Pierangelo joined the Ataoja of Osogbo, His Royal Majesty Oba Jimoh Oyetunji Laroye, as well as officials of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) to mark the opening of the cultural project.

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At the event, Pierangelo explained that the AFCP project will provide an accurate record of the current conditions of the shrine to effectively plan restoration work.

She noted that one of the key components of the AFCP project is a capacity building programme on digital documentation skills and cultural heritage management for curators and local officials responsible for managing the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove monuments.

“The United States is a strong supporter of efforts to preserve Nigerian culture,” Pierangelo said. “We have funded over $770,000 for preservation projects across Nigeria through the AFCP in the last four years.”

In addition to the Busanyin Shrine project, additional AFCP projects include documentation and conservation of the 14th-century Sungbo Eredo earthworks of the Yoruba Ijebu Kingdom in southwest Nigeria; documentation of the Ifa oral traditions in Oyo State; rock art preservation project in Cross River and Jigawa states, among many others.

Here are photos from the event:

US Consul General Claire Pierangelo (left) with the Ataoja of Osogbo, HRM Oba Jimoh Oyetunji Laroye and other state officials cutting the ribbon to kick off preservation project of the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove in Osogbo. Photos: US Consulate General, Public Affairs Section

Pierangelo (left) with Oba Laroye and other state officials cutting the ribbon to kick off the preservation project

Pierangelo with Oba Jimoh Laroye and other state officials listening to one of the staff of the Osun Osogbo Grove during a tour

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