Don Urges Stakeholders to Make Deliberate Efforts to Build Good Reading Culture

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By Stephen Adeleye
Prof. Makanjuola Osagbemi of the Federal University, Lokoja, has urged the relevant stakeholders to make deliberate efforts to build good reading culture to enhance lifelong learning amongst students and youths.
Osagbemi made the call on Wednesday in Lokoja, at the Annual Readership Promotion Campaign, organised by the National Library of Nigeria, with the theme: “Sustaining Lifelong Reading For Positive Change”.
In a paper presentation, Osagbemi said that the continuous decline of reading among Nigerian youths, affecting the lifelong learning skills should be a great concern to parents, educators, government, and other stakeholders.
He stressed the need to build a reading culture for lifelong learning in Nigeria, saying those who lacked the reading culture would hardly discover the secret of life success.
“The reluctant reading behaviour displayed by young adults especially students reflects the state of intellectual decay and backwardness in Nigerian educational system.
“This lack of drive, passion, desire, and urge for reading is capable of hampering lifelong learning as well as the development of a growing country like Nigeria.
“It is therefore, necessary that relevant stakeholders make deliberate efforts to build a good reading culture which translates to lifelong learning amongst students and the youths,” Osagbemi said.
He, therefore, urged the relevant stakeholders to adopt massive readership campaigns, orientation and other reading programmes, to build a strong foundation for reading culture for school children.
In his remarks, Prof Lenrie Aina, the Librarian/CEO, National Library, said the objective of the campaign was to encourage reading among Nigerians, increase reading materials, identify major challenges and address them.
Aina said that the 2018 theme was aimed to promote reading beyond utilisation and examination purposes but also encourage and sustain lifelong reading culture.
Aina, who was represented by Mr Aminu Ogaji from the Public Service Department (PSD), National Library, Abuja, urged the people to give priority to reading to overcome the challenges plaguing us as a nation.
The Kogi Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, commended the management of the National Library for the program, stressing the need for partnership with federal government, private sector and individuals.
According to her, reading is everybody’s business as it stimulates mental capacity, confidence, stronger analytical skills, smarter and entertaining. You can travel far the world through the pages of books.
“It is important that both public and private organisations partner together to ensure that our libraries are well equipped, functional and accessible for all students. Investment in education is a catalyst for profitable society,” Osikoya said.
Nine different Secondary Schools in Lokoja, participated in debate, spelling and reading competitions to mark the day. Bishop Delise College emerged the overall winner.

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