The National Library of Nigeria (NLN) has taken its readership promotion campaign to hospitals with a view to encouraging pregnant women to read to their unborn babies, the Head of Kano Branch, National Library, Alhaji Yakubu K. L has said.
Alhaji Yakubu K. L in his welcome address, said research had shown that there were lots of benefits the unborn babies drive from reading to them by their mothers.
He said the readership promotion campaign was one of the core mandates of NLN but it suffered a setback in the past as, thereby making it difficult for the NLN to organize it annually.
He assured that the campaign would not only be sustained but new innovations are being introduced to make it all encompassing.
“We are discussing with the National Youth Service Corps in Kano state on how it can assist be forming reading clubs in the corps members places of primary assignments. Collaborating with NYSC to achive the set goals comes in handy.”
The theme of this year’s campaign was “Sustaining Lifelong Reading for Positive Change” which is believed to have been chosen to build on the interest in reading with the view to maintaining the tempo set after the last campaign.
In his speech, Kano state governor, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Usman Alhaji, said in its effort to promote readership in the state, the state government has renovated 17 branch libraries, four new ones were constructed and four others were provided for in the 2018 budget.
He added that N10m was set aside for readership promotion campaign and N20m earmarked for the purchase of Teen Trust newspaper from Daily Trust for distribution among schools in the state to boost children’s reading culture.
In his remarks, the national librarian, Professor Lenrie O. Aina who was represented by the chairperson, Readership Promotion Campaign Committee, Ms Apkabio I.G, said, “The objectives of the campaign are 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”.
In this year’s campaign, 10 schools were invited out of which eight would participate in reading competition and the remaining two for debate for or against the topic “Government is responsible for poor reading culture among Nigerian children.”