By Elizabeth Uwandu

THE inability of parents and guardians to buy books for their wards and encourage the reading culture, have been identified as part of reasons that more 30 million Nigerian school leavers have poor reading culture. Mrs. Ibitola Adebayo, disclosed this at the opening of The Insight of an Author office in Ikeja on Monday.

The Insight of an Author, a project of Mrs. Adebayo, a UK-based international award-winning author, among other things, sought to create a platform for up-coming and established authors to share experiences on the world of writing; host seminars and mentoring for young authors and create more awareness on reading culture.

Speaking on how literacy could develop a nation and raise the self esteem of its citizens, Adebayo said: “I am here to be  part of the shinning beacon into the world of writers by offering unique insight into their works. I want to awaken the nation’s consciousness to the growing trend of illiteracy in Nigeria.

“I realised during my tour in some parts of Nigeria that reading culture has dwindled over the years. Studies have also shown that 40 per cent of Nigerian adults never finish reading a fiction book from cover to cover after leaving school, and that over 30 million Nigerians have poor reading skills. While in many universities, most students do not read, even few that read merely do so to pass examinations.

“The implications are that poor reading skill makes a child develop poor attitude towards school and creates self esteem problems later in life. Parents being the principal educators should buy books; encourage their kids to read newspapers, magazines and other literature.”

Mrs. Adebayo who also launched her Lizzy Adams initiative, a non-governmental organisation, to empower the girl-child by giving her roots and wings to fly, said: “My aim is for the girl-child to reach her full potential and live her best life story.

“This initiative will bring together young girls who have love to share in great activities and learn new and exciting things while developing their life skills.“

For Oluwaseun Idowu, project manager, the insight of an author and Lizzy Adams initiative said that “ The insight of an author aims to create opportunities and avenue  for expression through creativity.”

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