During the International Museums Day (IMD) celebration in Abuja yesterday, Mr. Folashodun Shonubi, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), announced a collaboration between CBN and Google to establish a Virtual Currency Museum Gallery.
This initiative aims to provide the public with convenient access to the currency museum without physically visiting the museum located at CBN’s headquarters in Abuja. Through the virtual museum, individuals can explore the exhibits and collections from their homes.
He said, “Thanks to technology, the Central Bank of Nigeria Currency Museum is collaborating with Google and our in-house Information Technology Department (|TD) to establish a Virtual Reality Museum.
“This is an approach to connect with the global world for the public to sit back and relax within their comfort zone and view the artifacts on display.”
The director further mentioned that the selected theme for this year’s celebration, “Museums, Sustainability, and Well-being,” aims to establish a connection between museums and global efforts to ensure the sustainability of our environments, thereby contributing to the betterment of the world. This theme was chosen by the International Council of Museums (1COM) for the year 2023, emphasizing the importance of museums in promoting sustainable practices and enhancing overall well-being.
Additionally, Mr. Ahmed Umar, the Director of Currency Operations at CBN, expressed that museums possess an extensive array of collections that offer countless opportunities to engage visitors in understanding how the past influences the present and how current issues can bring relevance to historical contexts once again.
Mr. Umar further commented, “Works of art possess a remarkable ability to convey profound insights into our shared humanity, the factors that unite and separate us, the sources of inspiration and provocation, as well as the enduring importance of creativity and innovation across various eras and cultures. I strongly believe that this perspective fulfills a fundamental societal need.”
“Museums play an important role in the society. Technology has helped Museums in reaching beyond core audiences to new publics. This has been shown in digitalizing collections, virtual tours, or something as simple as a hashtag that allows visitors to share their experiences on social media.”
He acknowledged the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on museums, preventing people from visiting them during that time. Nonetheless, the director highlighted that the crisis acted as a catalyst, driving significant innovations that have resulted in a heightened emphasis on digitization and the development of novel avenues for cultural experiences and dissemination.
He said, “COVID-19 has provided a pivotal moment for our society, and we call on all Museums to embrace it and lead the change.
“The time is neigh to rethink our relationships with the communities we serve, to experiment with new and hybrid models of cultural fruition, and to strongly reaffirm the essential value of museums for the construction of a just and sustainable future.