The Federal Government claims that the British government has cared for its looted artifacts for so long that it is time for the cultural and historical works of art to be returned home.
Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, revealed this in London on a working visit to the British Museum.
Following a meeting with museum officials, Mohammed, who was shown through the gallery and strong room, praised them for their passion and for caring for the artifacts for so long.
According to NAN, the minister met with Sam Nixon, Curator and Head of the Africa Section at the British Museum, and Lissan Bolton, Keeper of the Museum’s Department of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas.
“Previously, they claimed we did not make a demand, but in October of last year, about nine months ago, we issued an official request for the return of the artifacts, particularly the Benin bronzes, to which we have received no response.”
“We made them aware that our quest and clamor is for the restitution of the Benin bronzes and all other stolen and looted artifacts to their rightful place.”
“I told them they should take a cue from Germany, which was neither our colonizer nor the looter of the artifacts, but which caved in to pressure and agreed to return 1,130 Benin bronzes to us.”
“We also made it obvious to them that they could not hide behind legislation, and that no Act of Parliament could make what you had stolen yours,” he stated.
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