via Malay Mail, 20 Nvember 2023: The Penang government is set to repatriate 41 human skeletons, part of its Neolithic heritage, from the National Natuurhistorisch Museum in Leiden, the Netherlands, in early 2024. These skeletons, stored abroad for 150 years, were excavated from Guar Kepah, Kepala Batas, Penang, by archaeologists between 1851 and 1934. The Dutch government is assisting with the scientific analysis and funding the dating of these skeletons, which will later be displayed at the Guar Kepah Archaeological Gallery. This initiative symbolizes a significant effort in preserving Penang’s cultural and historical legacy.
The Penang government is in the process of bringing back 41 human skeletons stored at the National Natuurhistorisch Museum in Leiden, the Netherlands, in the first quarter of next year.
Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said these skeletons have been abroad for 150 years.
“The visit to The Hague and Collection Centre Netherlands (CCNL), in the Netherlands was made between March 22 and 24, and it represented a state government initiative to bring home 41 Guar Kepah human skeletons which are Neolithic prehistoric heritage assets that are currently stored at CCNL,” he said in response to a question by A. Kumaresan (PKR-Batu Uban) at the Penang state assembly meeting here today.
“It was to verify the existence and carry out analysis work on the skeletons…part of these skeletons have been abroad since 150 years ago,” he added.