Senegal Wants to Buy First President Senghor's Jewellery at Auction
17:38 20.10.2023 (Updated: 17:39 20.10.2023)
© AFP 2023 LOU BENOISTThis photograph taken on September 13, 2022 shows a bust of late the Senegalese President Leopold Sedar Senghor, in his house in Verson, western France. The house will be open during the "Heritage Days", from September 17 to 18, 2022 : a world first for the public.
© AFP 2023 LOU BENOIST
Leopold Sedar Senghor was a Senegalese poet, politician and cultural theorist who served as the first president of Senegal in 1960 until 1980. He was one of the theoreticians of Negritude, which is a term that refers to is a literary and theory critique that aimed at raising and cultivating 'Black consciousness' across Africa.
Senegal said on Friday that wants to buy former possessions of its first president at an auction Saturday in France, to "preserve the memory and heritage" of Leopold Sedar Senghor.
President Macky Sall has asked the culture minister, together with the Senegalese embassy in Paris, to enter into "appropriate discussions" with the auctioneer, it said in a statement received by AFP.
The items, to be auctioned in Caen, include Senghor's military jewellery and decorations, as well as and various other objects, including rings, bracelets, pendants and watches are listed as part of the collection, the culture ministry said in the statement.
"These lots from the estate of Leopold Sedar Senghor come from a private individual[...]," the Caen auction house said on its website.
Senghor, a poet, writer and professor before he became president, was a theorist of the "Negritude" movement founded in the 1930s with Aime Cesaire and Leon Gontran Damas.
He fought for France during the Second World War and was the first African to be admitted to France's Academie Francaise. President of Senegal from 1960 to 1980, he died in France at the age of 95.