The Irish Ambassador to Nigeria, Sean Hoy, Saturday 11, made a presentation of three route maps of Calabar and other Niger Delta terrains in the defunct Biafra to the Director General of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments, (NCMMs) Alhaji Yusuf Usman at the Commission’s head office in Abuja. This was contained in their twitter account @IrlEmbNigeria
The maps were designed by the late Roger Casement who served as Consul General in Nigeria and were lithographed at the Intelligence Division War Office (IDWO) in 1894.
Hoy said: “This year marks the centenary of the death of Roger Casement and presents us with an opportunity to celebrate his work as a humanitarian in Africa. Casement began his diplomatic career in Nigeria when he served as a young officer in Calabar.”
Roger Casement designed the map
He said work with his British colleagues made it possible to retrieve the maps and return them to Nigeria.
Hoy who said: “It is a great honour for me and for the British High Commissioner to present copies of these maps to you,” also said, “they are some of the earliest attempts to map the Calabar region.”
In his response, Alhaji Usman who thanked the envoy and his team said: “The maps will help tell the story of the Niger Delta, encourage map-making and landscaping.
He said: “There isn’t a lot known about Casement but this will enlighten Nigerians about him and his works.”
The DG said the significance of this is that it has opened another door into the efforts to protect Nigeria’s heritage and will help promote development of town planning and other aspects of our cultural heritage. “It also opens other areas of collaborations with the Irish Embassy.