Alimotu Pelewura

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Alimotu Pelewura was a Lagos women leader who was associated with the Lagos Market Women Association from the 1920s onwards up to 1951. She was an associate of Herbert Macaulay, a major supporter of the association, she also supported many of Macaulay's political beliefs and hosted parties for his political surrogates.

In 1947, she was made the Erelu of Lagos


Pelewura was born in the late nineteenth century, her mother was a fish seller and she succeeded her in the trade. She was successful in the fish trade and by the 1920s was well esteemed in Lagos. In the 1920s, she became the alaga of the biggest meat market in Lagos and was a prime mover fdr the creation of the Lagos Market Women Association. (1) In 1932, she became a member of the Ilu committee, a traditional executive council in Lagos, in the same year, she was part of a representative committee of market women to protest rumours of impending taxation. Her activism grew in the 1930s, when she protested the relocation of the Eleko market and the imposed taxation 8 years after the rumours began in 1932. During the war period, she was a leader in the movement to fight inflation influenced price controls of market produce being implemented by the colonial authorities. In 1938, she joined a radical wing of the Nigerian National Democratic Party, The Nigerian Union of Young Democrats.

Pelewura was barely able to read and write and had to use the services of two young men as a secretaries in the associations she founded.


  • (1)"African Women: A Modern History". p 166-167