The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has extended hands of fellowship to the federal government towards the protection of county’s heritage resources.
The Head, Culture Division of ECOWAS Commission, Dr Emil Zida stated that in Abuja at a workshop organised by National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) in collaboration with ECOWAS for Antiquities protection officers with the theme, “Safeguarding Nigeria’s Priceless Artefacts”.
He was hopeful that the workshop would strengthen the capacity of museum technicians especially the antiquities protection officers adding that the protection of cultural heritage and museums is a key programme of ECOWAS.
Zida noted that the development of cultural industries and the enhancement of culture cannot be easy without first protecting them.
According to him, “The doors of ECOWAS will remain open when it is possible to accompany this kind of initiatives and projects which can gather several countries”.
Also speaking, the acting DG of NCMM, Barr. Emeka Onuegbu stated that the workshop is another attempt by the commission to improve the quality of personnel in the antiquities protection unit.
“The officers are in charge of safe guarding the priceless artefacts under the custody of NCMM and because of the value placed on these objects, it’s security requires a specialised approach and entails a continuous reassessment and improvement of the skills and methods to be adopted by personnel in charge of protecting them”.
He was optimistic that trained professionals were carefully selected while the topics and scope of papers to be presented were directed at exposing and proffering solutions to the inherent challenges in the security of artefacts.
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