Lawyer and Activist Hannatu Musawa Becomes Nigeria’s New Culture Minister

Hannatu Musawa

UK-educated Hannatu Musawa will be in charge of the return of Benin bronzes and the construction of new museums.

In a pivotal development for Nigeria’s cultural landscape, Hannatu Musawa, a distinguished Nigerian barrister and human rights activist, has been appointed as the Minister of Art, Culture, and the Creative Economy. This appointment comes as President Bola Tinubu continues to drive transformative changes within the nation. Hannatu Musawa will succeed Layiwola Mohammed, who has held the position of Cultural Minister since 2015. Her formal assumption of office is scheduled for August 21st, 2023.

Musawa’s educational journey took her to the University of Buckingham in the UK, where she pursued her studies before furthering her academic pursuits with postgraduate degrees from the universities of Cardiff and Aberdeen. With this extensive background, Musawa is poised to assume a pivotal role in Nigeria’s cultural sphere.

One of the key responsibilities Musawa will undertake is negotiating the repatriation of the famed Benin bronzes, currently scattered across various European institutions. Additionally, she will oversee the establishment of new museums within Nigeria, enhancing the country’s cultural infrastructure and preserving its rich heritage.

Ambitious Plans for Nigeria’s Cultural Renaissance

As Hannatu Musawa prepares to assume her role as Nigeria’s Minister of Art, Culture, and the Creative Economy, she brings with her an ambitious vision to elevate the nation’s cultural landscape to new heights. Her plans are poised to not only celebrate Nigeria’s rich history but also harness its creative potential for economic growth and global recognition.

One of Musawa’s most pressing goals is to negotiate the repatriation of the renowned Benin bronzes, artworks that hold immense cultural and historical significance for Nigeria. While substantial progress has been made, with the return of 1,100 Benin bronzes from German museums, Musawa aims to continue these efforts, advocating for the repatriation of artifacts currently housed in collections across Europe and the US.

Furthermore, Musawa envisions the construction of new museums within Nigeria, which will serve as cultural hubs, showcasing the nation’s artistic heritage and creative contributions. By bolstering the country’s cultural infrastructure, these museums will play a vital role in preserving Nigeria’s diverse history and sharing it with both citizens and the international community.

Musawa’s tenure as Minister also aims to harness the power of Nigeria’s creative industries for economic growth. With a focus on fostering the growth of the creative economy, from literature and music to film and design, she aims to position Nigeria as Africa’s creative, cultural, and entertainment capital. By creating an environment that supports artistic expression, innovation, and collaboration, Musawa seeks to unlock the immense economic potential of the creative sector.

As Hannatu Musawa assumes office, the nation eagerly anticipates the transformative impact she will bring to Nigeria’s cultural and creative landscape. With her extensive education, advocacy background, and visionary plans, Musawa’s appointment marks a pivotal moment in Nigeria’s cultural renaissance.

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