Auction of 'stolen' African treasures happened despite FG's objection

Auction of 'stolen' African treasures happened despite FG's objection

- Artefacts which were reportedly stolen from Nigeria were put up for sale in Paris with one of them going for as far as $1m (R16 million)

- Before the sale happened, Nigeria's National Commission for Museum and Monument had asked they halt the sales

- The head of the commission, Theophilus Umogbai, said that the treasures were taken during the civil war and must be repatriated with interests

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According to Aljazeera, Christie’s house auctioned the ‘stolen statues” which Nigerian officials claim were taken during the civil war in the 1960s.

This was after Nigeria’s National Commission for Museum and Monument has asked that Christie stop the sale of the artefacts collected by art dealer and adviser of late French President Jacques Chirac.

Breifly.co.za learned that in June, the house sold Igbo statues for sold for $239,000 (R3.9 million). However, a very popular Urhobo statue which was valued at $1m (R16 million) did not sell.

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A collage of some of the treasures. Photos sources: Aljazeera/CTV News

A collage of some of the treasures. Photos sources: Aljazeera/CTV News
Source: UGC

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The head of the National Museum in Nigeria’s Benin City, Theophilus Umogbai, said that the works have to be given back to Nigeria and interest paid.

A Princeton scholar, Chika Okeke-Agulu, earlier in June said the objects were indeed looted and they are a very significant part of Nigeria’s heritage.

Aljazeera reports that Mallam Abdu Aliyu of Nigeria’s commission said they are very sure that the objects were taken illegally from Nigeria.

"We have written a letter of protest to Christie's ... and are going to engage Christie's and museums in the UK, Germany and other nations where our artefacts had been allegedly taken,” he said.

In other news, Briefly.co.za reported that Zodwa Wabantu is set to auction a picture of herself and the bidding will start at R150 000. The image is of the entertainer dancing her signature move, ivosho.

Speaking to TshisaLive, Zodwa said that she will be auctioning the artwork on the GeeGo App. In the picture, Zodwa is wearing a cream white dress with flowers on it. Her underwear and earrings are lined with faux diamonds and the frame of the picture lights up. Zodwa believes she will get a lot of bidders for the iconic picture. She said to the publication:

“The price is to highlight the value of art. If you know you know."

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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