President Bola Tinubu has pledged to protect Benin artefacts returned to the country from different parts of the world as a way of archiving the history of the people.
Tinubu made the commitment on Friday in Abuja when he received the Oba of Benin, Omo N’Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo Ewuare II, and other traditional leaders from Edo.
The President assured them that his administration would support the Benin Royal Council in its bid to establish a museum to house the artefacts.
Tinubu congratulated the Benin paramount ruler for the retrieval of the stolen artefacts.
He commended the Oba’s effort in ensuring that a befitting museum was built to archive the rich history and traditions of the Benin Kingdom.
“It deserves our protection. We are glad to have them back, and we are glad you are happy.
“They are in protective custody. It is a matter of history, over a hundred years. We will work on the museum,” he said.
Tinubu said the Federal Government was undertaking an audit of its infrastructure projects, promising to ensure that roads in Edo are considered in line with a request made by the traditional ruler.
In his address, Oba Ewuare II commended the President for the giant strides of his administration within its first weeks.
“We’ve predicted that you would hit the ground running and you have done so, even faster than we thought,” the royal father said.
He said the steps taken by the President since his inauguration had renewed the hope of Nigerians and put the country on the path to progress and development.
The Oba appealed to Tinubu to help the Benin Palace to ensure that the artefacts returned were not stolen or taken over from the Benin Royal House.
He thanked the Federal Government for his appointment as Pro-Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).