Heritage and Community Archaeology in South-Western Nigeria
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This chapter presents archaeological and ethnographic engagements with an NGO Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Foundation (OOPL), and the Kenta Sowunmi community in southwestern Nigeria. The chapter highlights how collaborative efforts between different stakeholders could be deployed to promote the aims and objectives of community archaeology. OOPL engaged archaeology to protect and preserve items of cultural and natural heritage that would otherwise have been destroyed by development projects. During ethnographic studies carried out among the Kenta Sowunmi community, other sites of archaeological interest were identified for future studies. This initiative, in which all stakeholders are brought together to pursue a common goal of heritage protection and management for tourism purposes, represents a new direction of community archaeology in Nigeria.
KeywordsCommunity archaeology Heritage Protection Management Tourism Nigeria
We wish to formally acknowledge the support of the Chairman of OOPLF (Chief Olusegun Matthew Aremu Okikiola Obasanjo, former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria). First, we thank him for inviting us to be part of this enduring legacy called Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library Foundation OOPLF). Second, apart from making available financial and other resources for the conduct of our research, he also graciously made available to us information from the draft of OOPLF Proposed Links for Website. Most of information used in the write-up of the introduction portions (pages 1–6) is derived from this source.
In spite of his very tight schedules Chief Obasanjo also visited the sites to assess and offer suggestions on other heritage materials located inside the OOPL and elsewhere in Ogun State of Nigeria.
We cannot but also acknowledge the support by the former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Professor Isaac Folorunso Adewole, who granted Institutional support to engage in research collaboration with OOPL. He also provided financial and other resources for the first phase of the research.
We also acknowledge the support of members of staff of OOPL particularly the resourceful Mr. Vitalis Ortese, the Secretary Board of Trustees and the Acting Managing Director, OOPL Ventures, Sir Martin Akanbiemu, the OOPL Resident Curator and Miss Clare Onasanya, the Media Officer.
We want to also thank the Baale and people of Kenta Sowunmi Village for granting us audience for ethnographic data collection. We thank the World Archaeology Congress 8 (WAC 8) members of Executive and LOC for the support (travel, registration, and accommodation) given to Professor J. O Aleru to attend WAC 8 conference in Kyoto, Japan where the content of this chapter was first presented as a paper in one of the sessions. We cannot but also thank the University of Ibadan for granting additional Institutional support to Prof J. O. Aleru to cover other incidental expenses at WAC 8 in Japan.
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