Nigeria, U.S sign MoU on cultural heritage preservation

Nigeria and the U.S. have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the preservation of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Adamawa State.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the MoU, which was signed on Thursday in Abuja, is for the implementation of the Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) Grant for the protection of the Sukur Cultural Heritage Site in Adamawa State.

According to the U.S. Chargé d’Affaires, David Greene, the project aims to improve the conservation of the cultural heritage of the Sukur Cultural Landscape World Heritage Site through documentation, conservation activities, and improvement of infrastructure.

Greene noted that the United States Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs awarded the grant to the Nigerian National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites in Nigeria (ICOMOS-Nigeria).

“This grant will support ICOMOS-Nigeria and its local partners to help preserve Sukur cultural heritage through infrastructure enhancements, revival of threatened traditional crafts, as well as documentation and preservation.

The Chargé d’Affaires applauded Nigeria’s unwavering dedication to the conservation, protection, and preservation of the country’s cultural heritage.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Hannatu Musawa, Nigeria’s Minister of Art, Culture, and the Creative Economy, expressed gratitude to the U.S. government for its continuous efforts and support towards the preservation of cultural heritage sites in Nigeria and the 2-year conservation and preservation work in the Sukur Cultural Landscape.

She added that the work also involved the conservation of the tangible and intangible heritage of Sukur Cultural Landscape, enhancing community capacity, and strengthening local, national, and international links and networks for conserving the site’s Outstanding Universal Values.

“We are aware that the Sukur cultural site is under imminent threat of insurgency and immediate danger imposed by global climate change.

“It is in this perilous setting that the USA, ICOMOS, and the other partners are venturing, bringing their message of hope and support.

“I thus deemed it imperative to be here today to express the gratitude of the Nigerian government and people to join in with other lovers of nature, heritage, and culture in showing our deep appreciation for this laudable effort,” she said.

NAN reports that the project is being anchored by ICOMOS and the NCMM under the coordination of Terry Little of Ahmadu Bello University, the American University of Nigeria, Yola, and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

Other contributors are Washington State University, University of Calgary, and the Factum Foundation from the United Kingdom. (NAN)



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