By Nkoli Opara (AGENDAWATCHDOG) – The Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II, is displeased with the roles of some individuals and groups, involved in negotiations for the recovery of stolen Benin artworks on behalf of the palace.
Ewaure made this known on Friday in his palace in Benin, while hosting Andreas Görgen, the Director-General of the Directorate of Culture and Communications of the German Embassy in Nigeria, who led a high level German delegation on a visit to his palace.
The revered monarch warned that the palace would not allow such a sacrilegious development to take place, adding that prestigious Benin artefacts were largely looted from the Oba’s palace during the invasion of 1897 by the British.
Ewuare harped on the need for the artefacts to be returned to the original owner, the royal family, insisting that no third party should negotiate or receive the materials on behalf of the Benin kingdom, adding that Benin artworks have deep spiritual, traditional and cultural significance to the kingdom.
While noting that the artifacts would boost the tourism sector in the state, the monarch added that the throne will collaborate with relevant stakeholders, including the Oba Ewaure foundation and the government, in the struggle to recover all the Benin looted artefacts from various countries.
Görgen, in his response, told the Oba that the German Government was ready to work with all relevant stakeholders to repatriate all Benin art objects in its custody.