Sarawak to bring ancient Niah Cave skeletons back from the US

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 02 Feb 2020

KUCHING (Bernama): Sarawak’s Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Ministry plans to bring back more than 100 ancient human skeletons about 40,000 years old, excavated from Niah Caves and currently in Florida, United States, by next month at the latest.

Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said the skeletons were kept at the University of Florida and he would be there to arrange the shipment of the bones back to Sarawak.

“It is hoped that the ancient human skeletons will be brought here (Sarawak) in February or March, ” he said in his speech while officiating the 5th Annual Ponggal Harvest Festival organised by the Malaysia Hindu Sangam in Sarawak, in Tebingan Kuching here Sunday (Feb 2).

He said the ancient bones were found in the Niah Caves when Sarawak Museum’s first curator Tom Harisson carried out excavation work at the cave between 1957 and 1967 but Sarawak had no university to conduct further research on the discovery at that time.

More than 200 ancient human skeletons were found at the western entrance of Niah Caves, of which 122 were transported by ship to the University of Nevada in the United States for research purposes.

Abdul Karim said the University of Nevada later sent the bones to the University of Florida which was also keen on doing research on the skeletons and then kept them there after the studies were completed.

“Fortunately when we checked our archives, the bones were found to be on loan (to a US university), so we wrote to them saying we wanted them returned, ” he said.

He said more than 100 ancient human bones were expected to be on display at the newly completed Sarawak Museum Complex, which is currently undergoing renovation work and was expected to open later this year. – Bernama

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

Next In Nation

PM: Cabinet wants LCS probe speeded up, any wrongdoers prosecuted
LCS 1 launched in 2017 was actual vessel, not a dummy, says former Navy chief
Woman detained over damage to neighbour’s car after parking spat
Sabah govt to help house buyers over troubled project in Tawau
Got an SMS saying your Touch ‘n Go account has been suspended? Company says it’s a scam
Penang Customs seizes 10.2 million smuggled cigarettes worth RM7.4mil
Immigration rounds up 84 in two raids
No agents appointed for grant applications, says Tourism Ministry
Sangkar’s appointment unlikely to change Pakatan’s influence in Sabah, says analyst
Jamal Yunos acquitted of uploading offensive content on FB

Others Also Read