62% of primary school pupils in Ghana cannot read, Accra World Book Capital

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The city of Accra has been selected ahead of other cities by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as the 2023 World Book Capital.

UNESCO adopted the 31 C/Resolution 29, in 2001, establishing the World Book Capital (WBC) programme and naming Madrid as the first WBC city in 2001.

The World Book Capital Network (WBCN) acknowledges the power of books and reading as cornerstones to more inclusive, peaceful and sustainable societies.

The Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, has named Accra (Ghana) as UNESCO World Book Capital for 2023, following the evaluation of the World Book Capital Advisory Committee.
After Guadalajara (Mexico) in 2022, the city of Accra was selected for its strong focus on young people and their potential to contribute to the culture and wealth of Ghana. Accra’s proposed programme seeks to use the power of books to engage these young people, as an effective way of skilling up the next generation.

Following this new development, Accra has become the fourth city in Africa to receive this title since 2001, making the city part of the prestigious World Book Capital Cities Network.

The minister of education, Hon. Yaw Osei Adutwum stated that reading should be part of the upbringing of children to ensure lifelong learning.

According to Honourable Yaw Osei Adutwum, reading transforms minds and minds transform society. We cannot talk about the transformation of our nation without bringing to bare the importance of reading and getting children who read for fun.

To him, children should not see reading as something that is required by school. If they see it as something required by school, when they graduate, they don’t read any longer and that is not how to build lifelong learners. Lifelong learners are individuals who are excited about reading and they pick up the book to read because it gives them excitement. That is what the Education Minister believes should be one of the legacies of Accra World Book Capital that we have men and women and adults who take interest in reading.

He further added that the initiative will help 62% of primary two children in Ghana who cannot read to understand. He said, in 2015 only 2% of primary two children could read to understand. And it is a serious indictment.

Various interventions that were put in place have now allowed the 2022 assessment in which every student in primary two was assessed, to have now moved to 38%.

From 2% to 38% is not a mere accomplishment. And he is not happy that 62% of students cannot read.

Again, he said he believes that as we improve literacy, we improve learning outcomes across board. They are going to take advantage of the spotlight that is now on Accra. They are going to create a culture of lifelong learning and beyond that also provide the opportunity for people to write and publish for people to buy and read.

The UNESCO representative to Ghana, Abdul Rahamani Diallo said the Accra World Book Capital will help improve tourism. And they will partner with other book fairs in Latin America. It is an opportunity for the economy. A lot of partner entities will organize intellectual conferences such as books and gastronomy, books and heritage, and books and history.

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Source: PazionMedia, Credit to joy news


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