When the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) started the initiative to establish Cultural Clubs in Secondary Schools within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), many saw it as just one in the series of programmes designed by the Institute to achieve its cultural orientation mandate.
However, in the Institute’s quest to effect a sense of cultural direction in the citizenry, promote value orientation, and underscore the importance of culture to national development, the Institute has taken a step further to explore its Cultural Clubs platform to promote sustainable reading culture among Nigerians.
The Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, made this known in Abuja on Tuesday, August 23, 2011, at the 6th edition of the National Media Workshop for Arts Writers and Editors, being one of the Institute’s core programmes.
According to the ES, the 6th edition of the media workshop, organized by the Institute in collaboration with the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), with the theme, “Media strategies for Propagating the Book Culture in Nigeria,” was informed by the low literacy level and poor reading culture among Nigerians, stressing that the workshop was designed to sensitize Arts Writers and Editors as well as media and public relations officers at all levels to the urgent need to publicize and popularize reading in the country.
Ayakoroma, who stressed that the Promoting Reading Culture campaign of the Institute is in line with the “Bring Back the Book (BBB)” initiative of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan GCFR, and also paid tribute to Mr. President for the campaign which was launched on December 20, 2010, saying NICO’s promoting reading culture is not just for examination purposes but for Nigerians to imbibe a lifelong hobby.
He further acknowledged reading to be one of the most effective tools for the acquisition of knowledge, emphasizing that since reading culture is said to be the process of building positive reading attitude among a people over a period of time, it should start at an early stage of childhood and nurtured into adulthood.
Ayakoroma assured that NICO will not relent but continue to collaborate with the media on workable strategies to enlighten the public towards propagating the book and reading culture in Nigeria.