THE Federal Government has vowed to put necessary measures in place so as to save the fast eroding Nigerian languages from extinction and encourage their teaching in schools across the country.
Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, spoke on Tuesday in Abuja, while declaring open the workshop tagged, “Enabling Writers: Bloom Software Training of Trainers workshop” organised by the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA), supported by Global Book Alliance (GBA) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Adamu said the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is doing all it could to restore, promote and sustain reading and writing culture in Nigeria.
He, therefore, challenged the Nigerian authors to write in a local language that would boost the provision of more books and materials in the mother tongue.
The Minister, who was represented by the Director, Educational Planning Research and Development, Dr Chioma Nwadei, said this would help reactivate the interest of the Nigerian youth in the ability to read and write in their local languages, thereby not driving Nigerian and indeed African languages to extinction.
He expressed the commitment of the Federation government to provide effective, efficient and quality teaching and learning in schools, saying this could, however, not be achieved without relevant and sufficient books and other instructional materials.
Focal Point of the ADEA, Lily Nyariki, from Kenya, in her presentation, called on the Nigerian government to develop National Book and Reading Policy to further encourage both writing and reading in the country.
She lamented that available statistics have shown that in Africa, the ratio is “15 students scrambling for one textbook” adding that Africa authors must strive to give the continent an identity through writing in local languages of the people.
President of Association Nigerian Authors (ANA), Denja Abdullahi, however, said one the greatest challenges of writers in Nigeria was the activities of pirates, which he noted had effected book publishing industry in the country.
He said his Association is currently partnering with the Nigerian Copyright Commission to deal with the challenge.
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