October 4, 2022
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Nigeria: Germany Ready to Return 1350 Stolen Benin Bronzes – Nigerian Govt – AllAfrica – Top Africa News

  • November 7, 2021
  • 4 min read
Nigeria: Germany Ready to Return 1350 Stolen Benin Bronzes – Nigerian Govt – AllAfrica – Top Africa News

The federal government yesterday disclosed that the German government has expressed its readiness to return 1,350 looted Benin bronzes back to Nigeria.
Already, the two countries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) towards the return of the bronzes to Nigeria before long.
Information and Culture Minister, Lai Mohammed, made this known while defending the 2022 budget proposal of his ministry before the Senate committee on Culture.
According to him, the federal government recently signed an MOU with the German government on how to return 1,130 Benin bronzes stolen from Benin in 1897 which found their way to various museums in Germany.
He also added that talks were on with governments of both Switzerland and France on the possibility of repatriating Nigeria’s cultural artifacts in the two countries.
The Minister further stated that November 2022, had been set by federal government as possible date for the completion and rehabilitation of the National Arts Theatre in Iganmu, Lagos.
According to him, the federal government has signed a Memoranda of Understanding with the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Bankers committee to invest in the rehabilitation of the theatre and hand it over to the federal government.
He further added that the Bankers committee had assured that the edifice would be completed by November, but with a proviso to run the theatre for 21 years to recoup their funds.
Mohammed told the lawmakers that the tourism sector could be a viable alternative to crude oil, saying the creative sector currently generates N7.18trillion annually.
According to the Minister, despite poor funding of the ministry, it has continued to work to turn the fortunes of the creative industry around to the benefit of Nigeria.
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He said of the N7.18 trillion being generated by the Creative Industry annually, the music industry contributes N350 million; fashion industry – N2 trillion; make-up industry – N1.53 trillion; hospitality industry – N2 trillion and books and publishing industry – N1.2 trillion.
Commenting on the issue of digital switch over, he said it would create over one million jobs in the next two years and provide television spectrum worth over N200 billion to sell to telecommunication companies.
Mohammed appealed for more investment in the creative and tourism industry, saying they were potential money spinner for the country.
Speaking earlier, Chairman of the Committee, Senator Okorocha called on the Federal Government to woo private investors into the creative industry in order to develop and stabilise the sector as a potential replacement for crude oil which is gradually going out of fashion because of climate change issues.
Read the original article on This Day.
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