Artist: Aggelika Korovessi
Location: Phaneromeni elementary school, old city of Nicosia. Nicosia district
Category: ΕΟΚΑ 1955-59, Cypriot Women
Photography: Evangelia Matthopoulou
The initiative for the memorial was taken, among others, by the politicians Tassos Papadopoulos and Manolis Christofidis. The unveiling took place on July 12th 1996. An ad hoc private committee called an artistic competition and coordinated the fundraising. The competition gave no satisfactory results and as a consequence an invitation was made directly to the sculptor Aggelika Korovesi.
The bust is situated at the Faneromeni elementary school because Kokkinou herself attended this school, and, subsequently, taught there. In contrast to the norm, this bust symbolically depicts the hands of the commemorated person, in an attempt to insinuate her personality and her activity both as a teacher and as a patriot. Kokkinou was coordinating the female division of the Orthodox Christian Youth Union (OXEN) and during the 1950s she recruited many young Cypriot girls to the EOKA fight.
An inscription between her hands writes: “I fight to honor my national dignity” (Αγωνίζομαι για να κρατώ ψηλά την εθνική μου αξιοπρέπεια). A second inscription was added after the inauguration, narrating in a more descriptive way her social identity: “The first woman theologian in Cyprus. She was always at the forefront. She recruited, coordinated and inspired fighters for freedom. She fought, she got imprisoned and persecuted. She taught with her words and actions” (Πρώτη γυναίκα θεολόγος της Κύπρου. Ήταν πάντα στις επάλξεις. Στρατολόγησε, οργάνωσε και ενέπνευσε αγωνιστές της ελευθερίας. Αγωνίστηκε, φυλακίστηκε, διώχθηκε. Δίδαξε με το λόγο και το παράδειγμά της).
~ Αγών (Agon), February 5, 1995, p. 7.
~ Αλήθεια (Alithia), February 6, 1995, p. 3.
~ Σημερινή (Simerini), December 5, 1994, p. 4.
~ Σημερινή (Simerini), February 5, 1995, p. 22.
~ Φιλελεύθερος (Fileleftheros), February 2, 1995, p. 4.
~ Χαραυγή (Haravgi), February 6, 1995, p. 5.
~ Αρχείο Δήμου Λευκωσίας (Nicosia Municipality Archive), 06-7.9, documents June 3, 1994; June 13, 1994; June 27, 1994; September 15, 1994; February 2, 1995; May 28, 1996; June 17, 1996; Meeting Minutes July 1, 1996.