The National Museum of Unity Ibadan has called on all and sundry to give priority to the promotion, and conservation antiquities for the interest of protecting the cultural heritage of the diverse ethnic groups in Nigeria.
This call was made during the 2016 edition ‘Antiquity Protection Day, a day set aside to encourage communities to reflect on the importance of cultural heritage and to bring attention to the efforts required to protect and conserve tangible and intangible items at the nation’s museums.
Speaking during this year’s event, the Curator, National Museum of Unity Ibadan, Elder Amos Olorunipa highlighted the significance of tourism and impacts of antiquities to the nation and the need to take absolute care of the items.
“Cultural heritage should remain a priority in protection, conservation and sustainable management. Therefore, it is worthy to use the day to create further awareness and enlightened the entire public in an educative manner.”
The Head, Antiquities Protection Unit, National Museum of Unity, Ibadan, Mr Adegboyega Oyelayo disclosed that the event was organised to re-awakening and sensitised Nigerians on diverse cultural background with the need to safeguard the cultural heritage across the nation.
“Antiquity Protection Day is to celebrate the need for the protection of our collective cultural heritage with a view to educate the populace on the effects of illicit trafficking, neglect, destruction and theft of antiquities”, Oyelayo said.
Speaking on this year’s theme, Celebration and Presentation of our Collective Cultural Heritage, the guest speaker, Dr Segun Opadeji of Department of Anthropology, University of Ibadan, hinted that Cultural heritage represents a source of identity, which contributes significantly to economic development and social stability.
The Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Oyo State, Dr Toye Arulogun commended the National Museum on the initiative, as a way to promote tourism in the state in line with the tourism vision of the Oyo State government.
Prior to the conclusion of the events, the cultural troupe of the museum entertained with cultural play while the students of Mufu Lanihun College of Education gave a captivating performance on Sango,which was applauded by guests at the event.
Among the special guests at the occasion are the representative of the State Commandant, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Mr Oluwale Olusegun, representative of Oyo State police Command, CSP Alabi Adebowale; representative of Nigeria Custom Service, Mr Kadejo Busayo; representative of the NDLEA, Mr Davies-Manuel and representative of the State Directorate of Security Service.