Poor Reading Culture that Drags Nigerians Future

Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with a population of over 150 million. With this number, a large scale of their population are illiterate. Moreover, data from United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics shows that from the years 1991, 2003 and 2008 the literacy rate population wide is declining. They define literacy as people who can both read and write with understanding a short simple statement about their everyday life. 

In 2012 UNESCO have drafted an action plan to help improve the literacy rate in Nigeria. Nigeria’s Constitution (1999), the Vision 2020 document and the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS) underline the importance of education as a vehicle of both individual empowerment and national development. However, National Literacy Survey (2010) conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics in Nigeria have shown a hard fact to swallow, seventeen states out of thirty seven  are at risk of not achieving EFA goal 4 by 2015 as they have youth and adult literacy rates between 14.5 to 49.3%. These States have concurrently experienced very low enrollment rates in primary education. 

Yes, one might conclude that this is just one of the challenges Nigeria is facing since the country is struggling economically. But does that mean we just need to wait for the government to fix all the national issues before addressing the intellectual starvation of the young minds of Nigerian people?  
Having confronted of this sad reality Nigeria is facing, have reminded me of one of my favorite quotes from an award winning children’s author and illustrator - Dr. Frank Serafini – which states:

 “There is no such thing as a child who hates to read; there are only children who have not found the right book.” 
    -Dr. frank Serafini 
I strongly believe that these statistics could have given us better figures if good books are more accessible to Nigerians. A good thing is the fast-paced technology of today which allow you now to buy books online in Nigeria even at the comfort of your home or office. If the children of Nigeria are encouraged to invest on the right books, then the doors for a better literacy rate and even doors for better life will definitely open up for them. It could also help to ease the poor literacy rate if the educators in the country can do a little extra help to the learners, tell them where to buy good books in Nigeria.
Let me end this with a short reminder, problem will remain a problem if you sit in one corner meddling on its causes. Low literacy rate among Nigerians is a problem needed to be resolved as soon as possible and if finding a good books and most especially Nigerian books is one of the initial solutions you can think of then act now by sharing this with your friends and relatives. 
Interested to know more about the efforts we do to make a wave of well-informed and literate Africans. You might want to pay a visit and look for good books yourself; you can check our website at www.sunshinenigeria.com  and our regular blog post to keep you updated at www.goodbooksafrica.com.

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