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15th Edition of Ghana International Book Fair Opens In Accra
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Ghana International Book Fair Opens 15th Edition at AICC
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The 15th edition of the Ghana International Book Fair has opened at the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) to allow both local and international book industry players come together to trade books and negotiate deals.

Former Vice President of SOS-Kinderdorf International, Dr. Margaret Nkrumah in her keynote address made a clarion call on parents to inculcate the habit of reading in their wards by showing interest in reading books themselves.

She stressed that parents should give books to their children at a very tender age to plant in them the interest of reading as they grow.

Speaking on the theme ‘Books and Culture in the Digital Age’, Dr. Mrs Nkrumah reiterated that “the digital age has impacted on the way we live, read and every facet of our lives”, emphasising on the need to properly document the country’s culture and history.

The four-day event is being organised by Ghana Book Publishers Association (GBPA) to create a market-place for publishers, writers, printers, booksellers, librarians and other stakeholders in the industry to interact and foster strong links.

The Book Fair is also to create conducive climate through seminars, conferences, symposia, workshops and other competitions where the intellectual potentials in the book industry can find firm roots to grow.

President of GBPA, Elliot Agyare, in an interview with Peacefmonline.com said the event was characterised with rich arrays of workshops and seminars to help grow their businesses and urged all participants and the public to take advantage of them.

He announced that there would be a special meeting to brainstorm on how to mainstream book sellers into the industry chain.

He said book fairs were very important events held worldwide and Ghana should not be an exemption and called for support for the sector and industry players so that they would continue to develop.

Mr. Agyare again called for collaboration between the Ministry of Education and the Publishers to raise standards of education in the country; thus there should be government support in its budget for the publishers as it is being done for those in entertainment industry.

The Chairman of National Media Commission, Nana Kwesi Gyan Apenteng in solidarity message, said it was very important to understand the benefits of books in the development of any country.

He said book publishing was at the centre of the digital economy and called for deep reflection on the theme.

Nana Apenteng, who is also the President of the Ghana Writers Association, announced that the Association would organise a Book Festival on September 21, in Accra.

The Association, he said, had organised similar festivals in the Western and the Upper West Regions, and the next regional festival would be held in the Volta.

Deputy Managing Director of the Heritage Bank, Peter S. Dery, Sponsors of the Fair, said the success of every country relied on “how well we inculcate reading of books in our children”, pledging the Bank’s support in that direction.

The Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Investment Promotion Council, Yofi Grant on his turn, said the digital platform had created a bigger platform for the youth to read widely and urged them to take advantage of the positive side of social media to enhance their lots.

He advised the GBPA to turn their challenges into opportunities because without them, ‘nothing happens’, adding, “We are actively seeking investment to deepening the industry”.

President of Private Enterprise Federation, Nana Osei Bonsu, said the GBPA has a critical role to play in the development of the country’s culture and history.

He blamed inadequacies in the country’s norm and practices on the lack of documentation of the country’s culture and history and urged the Association to bridge that gap.

“Publishers’ relevance depends on the government of the day,” he said, urging government to come up with policies gearing towards acquisition of local books for schools.

“We cannot continue to depend on foreign publishers since independence till date,” he said, and called for government’s support to grow the industry.

More than 20 local and international publishers and companies are taking part in the four-day fair which is being held under the auspices of the Ghana Book Publishers Association (GBPA).
Source: Daniel Adu Darko/Peacefmonline.com/[email protected]

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