The Nigerian Government on Thursday received a stolen Ile-Ife artefact from Mexico.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama received the artwork from the Charge D’affaires of the Nigerian mission in Mexico, Yakubu Dadu.
“Presented with an ancient bronze sculpture by Dr. Yakubu Dadu, Chargé Affaires of The Nigerian Embassy in Mexico,” the minister tweeted on his official handle.
“This Ife bronze was stolen from Nigeria and noticed at an airport in Mexico by our Ambassador at the time, Aminu Iyawa.”
The minister explained that the then-ambassador was “suspicious and alerted the authorities who played a significant role in ensuring it was recovered and handed back to us.”
While thanking the Mexican government for its role in the return of the artefact, he said he will present it to the Information and Culture Minister, Lai Mohammed.
Late last month, the University of Aberdeen said it will return a Benin Bronze to Nigeria, many years after the British looted the sculptures.
“An ongoing review of the collections identified the Head of an Oba as having been acquired in a way that we now consider to have been extremely immoral, so we took a proactive approach to identify the appropriate people to discuss what to do,” the school said as it became the first institution to agree to the full repatriation from a museum of a Benin bronze.