THE Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode has charged academics and the library community to re-ignite the passion for writing of books which will stimulate the reading culture among the people, adding that the emergence of technological development has made acquisition of knowledge accessible with the click of a button.
The Lagos State governor made the charge at the 2018 Annual Readership Promotion Campaign held at the National Library of Nigeria in Lagos.
The Governor who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, the office of the deputy governor Mrs Yetunde Odejayi said that it is pertinent to know that reading is an integral component of education, therefore the development of any education or curriculum policy must include a strategy for the development of the reading culture.
He emphasized that” It is important we remind ourselves of the importance of knowledge acquisition.”
The Governor stated that” It is necessary for Government to promote knowledge acquisition through reading by establishing libraries to serve the needs of the people and adequate supply of books and other relevant materials. “
“Books that I read many years ago still remains relevant to me. There are golden writers waiting to be discovered by publishing houses and stories waiting to be told, therefore I commend the board of the National Library of Nigeria for this campaign” he also added
Mr Ambode also urged all Nigerians especially the youths to apply themselves to reading as a tool for empowerment because knowledge is power.
“If we are deserving of the change in our society, we have to adopt a new attitude to reading books and other articles for self-development and growth”. The governor said
The National Librarian/CEO, Professor Lenrie Aina, represented by the Acting Director, Collection Development and Technical Services Department, Mrs Antonia Onuoha stated that the objectives of the campaign is to encourage reading among Nigerians, promoting the increase of reading materials in Nigeria and identifying major obstacles that inhibit reading and ways of addressing them.
He added that over the years the National Library has continued to embark on readership promotion campaigns for children and youths who are the future leaders of tomorrow by way of sensitizing, informing, educating, and advancing knowledge and creativity of the youths via literary activities, which will also form some of the activities lined up for the day.
“This year’s event is aimed at promoting reading beyond sheer utilization and examination purposes; encouraging life-long reading from womb to grave and sustaining the creation of model reading clubs at both primary and secondary school levels among others” the national librarian stated
He also added that “Children who disregard reading hardly think. Non-readers don’t think. They hardly take time to examine their challenges albeit solve them. Non-readers hardly critique; they swallow what they are told without questioning. A reader is a very critical and highly creative person”.
Speaking also, The Head of Board, Lagos State Library, Mrs Obianuju Onuorah said that the declining interest in reading among the children especially those in primary and secondary schools is a cause for alarm.
She added that the absence of reading culture has greatly affected the quality of graduates produced by the nation’s institutions of higher learning.
Mrs Obianuju explained that reading for lifelong sustenance, on the other hand, aims at inculcating the habit of reading into the child at a tender age so that the habit is sustained through his adult life, saying that reading is, therefore, something to be enjoyed all through life from cradle to grave