The Minister of Information and culture, Lai Mohammed, said the federal government will soon initiate a process of getting back all the artefacts that have been appropriated or stolen by foreigners and foreign powers.
The minister told a news conference that the country will use every legal means to get everything back.
TVC News correspondent, Ademola Lawrence , who was one of the journalists at the briefing, reports that a large number of Nigeria’s priceless artefacts left the country’s shores long before she became a country.
The high point was the infamous assault on Benin in 1897. Dispossessing Nigerians of their heritage went on throughout the period of colonial domination and more recently, and continues today, through looting of archaeological sites and museums.
Sometime last year, western cultural institutions said they were open to loaning Nigeria some of the art looted from the country, but the minister wants all objects of traditional and cultural values taken illegally to be returned unconditionally.
The minister added that, looking at the benefit of having this artifacts back into the country from different parts of the country, the ministry will use every legal means to get the cultural heritage back from individuals by signing an agreement and a memorandum of understanding.
The Ministry is however, appealing to every Nigerian home and abroad to key into this initiative in order to revive the pride of the nation. He says there would be an annual conference on the restitution of national artifacts.