Newly elected president of the Nigeria Publishers Association Hon Uchenna Anioke has initiated an advocacy for the introduction of local languages in teaching especially in the universities.
Anioke who was hosted to a grand reception in Enugu at the weekend noted that China, India, North Korea, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, and Germany, produced their best medical doctors and their best engineers, teaching them in the university with the local language.
“Aside a few books you can find in primary and secondary schools that was written in Hausa, Yoruba, or Igbo, in higher institutions, we don’t have any book.
“We can’t produce a doctor using our indeginous language. We can’t produce an engineer, a computer scientist using our indeginous language.
“Look at north Korea, they don’t speak English but they have the best computer scientists, look at India, people are going to the moon yet they don’t speak English. Look at Germany, the best machines we use are not produced in English.
“So until Nigeria begins to write, begin to produce our best using the local languages, for instance, universities in the east should teach courses in Igbo language, in the west, let it be taught in Yoruba and in the north, it should be taught in Hausa language.
” That’s when begin to hide our secretes. And who can drive it? the publishers can encourage authors to achieve this”. Anioke said.
Mr. Anioke said that this is one area, a revolution he wants to carry beyond others.
“If i can achieve this within my four years, i will be grateful to God”. Anioke said.
Also speaking, the Director General of the Nigeria Copying Commission, Dr. John Asein said he is working with publishers to address the challenges of piracy in the country.
Dr. Asein said that the copyright commission is very much aware of the challenges from the cost of printing in Nigeria, and the problems of distribution, to the challenges from pirates, and to the discordance between them and the book sellers.
“So what we are doing at this point is to build that partnership. In fact we have what i call a partnership of the Nigeria Copyright Commission, Nigeria Publishers Association, Nigeria Book Sellers Association, and the chartered institute of printers.
“So with the four of us working together, we can begin to look at the problems of the book; from the very beginning which is the authorship, to the very end point which is the sale to the consumer out there”.
Dr. Asein assured that they are going to put heads together and see how they can make Enugu state a safe state for publishing.
“That’s one of the things we are going to deliver on to see how we can convince the state government and all the stakeholders and players in the state to look back on.
“Like you very well know, Enugu is a town on the hill and when you have the candle lit, you don’t hide it; you put it on the hill top and this being the hill top state, we should make it a shining example of how how the book should be treated and how Publishers should have the kind of congenial atmosphere that we need for them in Nigeria.
“So Enugu will end up being an example of one state where publishers can come and feel safe to do their business”. Dr. Asein noted.