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Worldwide cease and desist order on afiwe artifacts

Written by on 15 June 2021



Immediately after the city was captured, widespread looting began. It was an exercise that was carried out by all members of the expedition. Houses, sacred sites, ceremonial buildings and palaces of many high-ranking chiefs were looted and many buildings were burned down, including the Palace building itself on Sunday 21 February. There was evidence of previous human sacrifice found by members of the expedition, with journalists from Reuters and the Illustrated London News reporting that the town ‘reeked of human blood.


Oba Ovonramwen Nogbaisi (ruled 1888–1897), also called Overami, was the Ọba (king) of the Kingdom of Benin up until the British punitive expedition of 1897.

Born in circa 1857, he was the son of Ọba Adọlọ. He took the name Ovọnramwẹn Nọgbaisi at his enthronement in 1888. Every Ọba took a new name at his coronation, Ovọnramwẹn meaning “The Rising Sun” and Nọgbaisi meaning “which spreads over all”.

The Oba was eventually captured by the British consul-general, Ralph Moor. He was deposed and exiled to Calabar. A British Resident was appointed, and six chiefs were hung in Benin City’s marketplace.
















The looting of Benin palace

Most of the plunder from the city was retained by the expedition with some 2,500 (official figures) religious artefacts, Benin visual history, mnemonics and artworks being sent to Britain. They include over a thousand metal plaques and sculptures collectively known as the Benin Bronzes. The Admiralty confiscated and auctioned off the war booty to defray the costs of the expedition.

About 40% of the art was accessioned to the British Museum, while other works were given to individual members of the armed forces as spoils of war, and the remainder was sold at auction by the Admiralty to pay for the expedition as early as May 1897 (Stevens Auction Rooms, 38 King Street, London, May 25, 1897; followed by several sales at William Downing Webster, Bicester, between 1898 and 1900). Most of the Benin Bronzes sold at auction were purchased by museums, mainly in Germany. The dispersal of Benin artworks to museums around the world catalysed the beginnings of a long and slow European reassessment of the value of West African art. The Benin art was copied and the style integrated into the art of many European artists and thus had a strong influence on the early formation of modernism in Europe.

The link was found at the website. 












We are writing as the State of the African Diaspora an International Governmental Organisation
(IGO) in association with the House of Ancestry, South Carolina, USA and as Members of the
Economic Community of the 6th Region of Africa.
London Satellite address:
Gemma House, 39 Lilestone Street, City of Westminster
London NW8 8SS, United Kingdom


As a matter of extreme urgency, we issue this Cease and Desist Order Letter to instruct you to immediately, stop, suspend, terminate, discontinue and cancel all and any future, sales, auctions, online sales, biddings, private and public arrangements of sale of any and all African Cultural
Artifacts and Antiquities including Aboriginal Art, which were looted, pillaged and stolen during the periods of colonisation. We understand that your establishments are in the possession of and has been in the possession of such African Culture Artifacts and Antiquities. We also understand that your establishments are in the process of and have been in the past selling, auctioning, and by private arrangement sales and public sales disposing of such stolen and looted artifacts.

To read the entire letter click this link.

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