US museums return trove of looted treasures to Nigeria
On February 23, 2018, Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, Ted Baekeland, issued a directive to all government agencies to return the looted artifacts to Nigeria, following the historic announcement by President Muhammadu Buhari that the government would return the vast stolen art pieces to Nigeria.
A statement released by the Ministry of Finance on February 23, 2018 as a result of the successful repatriation of a large number of looted artifacts.
The statement further noted that the government has allocated USD$6 million to restore and restore the stolen and looted artifacts, including the museum’s collection. The statement noted that “The Ministry of Finance was established in accordance with the National Policy on Education and Human Resources for Development, and is mandated to provide leadership for the provision of accessible, affordable, quality education that meets the requirements of national development. The ministry shall foster economic growth and development for the benefit of the nation.”
A UNESCO Director stated, “These priceless works in the museum will be returned to their rightful owners, and it is of great benefit to our country that they will once again join our permanent museum collection, at no additional cost.” UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova said of the decision to return these items, “I am delighted that the Nigerian authorities are finally responding to the call I made nearly a year ago to restore the looted artifacts from the museum collections to their true international treasures. I thank President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigeria National Museum for their efforts in restoring the stolen art treasures, and I wish them and the country well in their further initiatives to recover and restore stolen antiquities.”
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari announced on February 23 that a plan has been initiated to return, in their respective cultural and historical contexts, the looted artifacts from the Ota Memorial Museum. The move comes as the Nigerian President said that, “It is now time to return the art with full dignity and respect to their rightful owners. This is an exciting first step towards returning the loot to the country’s people.”
In April 2017, Buhari reiterated his commitment to deliver on the national art restitution campaign.
In addition to returning