Christopher Okigbo



Press release:

Courier Mail, June 21, 2007 12:00am,23739,21940454-953,00.html

We are pleased to announce that on June 20th 2007 the unpublished papers by the poet and separatist fighter Christopher Okigbo, who died in Nigeria's civil war in 1967, were added to the UNESCO's Memory of the World Register founded by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation a decade ago. It has 158 items on its register. Also added to the list were records from the trial of Nelson Mandela, a medieval French tapestry, a millennium-old Iranian epic and the 1939 Hollywood movie The Wizard of Oz.

A copy of the Book of Kings by the poet Ferdowsi (935-1020), the equivalent of Homer's Iliad in the Persian-speaking world, that was transcribed in 1430 at the request of Prince Bayasanghor.

Thirty ancient manuscripts of the Rigveda, a sacred Hindu text, dating from 1800BC to 1500 BC, were added to the list as the oldest-known Vedic texts of the Hindu religion.

From China, the body added the Qing Dynasty Yangshi Lei Archives, a collection of blueprints for the construction of a series of imperial palaces over eight generations of the Lei Family, from the 17th to 20th centuries.

The printing woodblocks of the Tripitaka Koreana, carved on 81,258 wooden blocks between 1237 and 1248 and kept on Mount Kaya in South Korea, were chosen as the most complete collection of Buddhist texts.

France's Bayeux Tapestry, a 70m long 11th-century embroidery depicting the events leading up to the 1066 Norman invasion of England, was also added.

UNESCO also selected the Hereford Mappa Mundi, kept in Britain, which is the only complete example of a large medieval world map.

UNESCO certifies the inscription of Christopher Okigbo Collection (COF) in the Memory of the World Register, 02 August 2007.