eThekwini Municipality is expected to repatriate Mummy High Priest, Peten-Amun (Ptn-'Imn) to Egypt. The mummy was acquired by the Durban Museum somewhere between 1889 and 1910, according to mummipedia.fandom.com.
The repatriation process, expected to take place during the course of the 2024/2025 financial year, will be conducted in close coordination with Egyptian authorities and in adherence to national and international protocols governing the return of cultural heritage items to their countries of origin.
The City expressed its intent to repatriate the mummy following a thorough investigation of the circumstances surrounding its presence in Durban, which remain unclear. The municipality recognises the importance of addressing historical injustices and upholding ethical standards in the preservation and handling of cultural artefacts.
"After extensive deliberation, the City acknowledges the significance of returning the mummy to its country of origin and honouring its cultural and historical importance to the people of Egypt," said eThekwini's head of Parks, Recreation and Culture, Dr Simphiwe Ndlovu.
Plans are in place to repatriate the Egyptian Mummy of a High Priest. The Mummy and coffin date back about 300 BCE and contain the remains of an Egyptian minor priest named Peten-Amun (Ptn-‘Imn), who came originally from Akhmim (Akhmîm) Video: @eThekwiniM pic.twitter.com/xQ7ktMqPOj— Se-Anne Rall (@seannerall) January 17, 2024
He added that, along with the national Department of Sport, Arts, and Culture and the South African Heritage Resources Agency, they will ensure that the repatriation process is undertaken with the utmost care.
The city explained that the mummy and coffin date back to the Late Dynastic or Early Ptolemaic periods. Peten-Amum originally came from Akhmim, which is about 354 kilometres from Cairo, Egypt.