" ITREALMS: FG to Germany: Release Benin bronzes to Nigeria - ITREALMS

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

FG to Germany: Release Benin bronzes to Nigeria - ITREALMS

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The Federal Government of Nigeria has demanded the release of Benin bronzes from German Museums to Nigeria, reports 
The government made this demand through the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lia Mohammed when he hosted a German delegation on repatriation of Benin Antiquities in Abuja on Tuesday in company of Governor of Edo State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki
“I am aware that, following an earlier meeting involving the German delegation, the NCMM, Edo State Government and the Royal Palace of Benin over the Benin Bronzes, certain agreements were reached,” he said.

These agreements, he said, include that Benin bronzes from German museums shall be released to Nigeria.

Upon their return, the Minister revealed that the bronzes are expected to be exhibited at the proposed museum being anchored by the Legacy Restoration Trust, of which NCMM is a part.

“We do know, from our knowledge of the workings of the German federal system, particularly regarding museums and antiquities, that a lot of work must have gone into the agreement by the German Federal government, the states and cities to have made the announcement of a return to be made,” he said.

In addition, he said, as part of the agreement from the last meeting on March 17th 2021, an opportunity for postgraduate museum studies for two young Nigerians, as part of selected scholars worldwide, is being provided by the German government.

He pointed out that after the last meeting, Germany released a globally-acknowledged statement signifying its intention to release a substantial part of the Benin antiquities in its hold.

According to him, the German delegation has also signified its intention to assist us in building a storage facility for the repatriated antiquities. 

“I am informed that this facility will be built as part of the National Museum complex in Benin, which ultimately will be part of the Cultural hub which European partners and the NCMM, the Edo Government and the Royal Palace of Benin, through the Legacy Restoration Trust, are constructing. I must say this is a welcome development and a great example to the world, especially to those other countries holding Nigerian artifacts," he assured.

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