GERMANY TO RETURN BENIN ARTIFACTS TO NIGERIA .
Written by Samson Ojeniran on May 19, 2021
Germany has agreed to return all Benin artifacts to Nigeria by 2022.
The artifacts are those taken from the Benin Royal Court following the British incursion in 1849.
Making the pledge in Abuja, the German Director-General of Culture and Communication, Andreas Gorgen said Germany acknowledges that Nigeria has suffered a loss.
He said Germany is on a restitution mission to Nigeria, to return all artifacts taken from the Benin Empire.
The event was attended by the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed; Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki; and the German delegation.
In 1897, British colonial forces razed Benin city, massacring an unknown number of people and bringing a violent end to the Kingdom of Benin, which had thrived for centuries as one of West Africa’s major powers. During the raid, British troops looted at least 3,000 precious items made by the Edo people, including ivory statues, carved elephant tusks, ceramics, masks, carved portraits of Obas (or Kings) and their mothers, and more than 1,000 intricately decorated brass plaques that once adorned ancestral altars and court buildings in the city’s royal palace.
EDITOR: OKECHUKWU EZE