Writers in country have been asked to focus on writing their books in Malawi’s local languages with the aim of communicating various messages to the masses.
The call was made on Thursday by Minister of Civic Education, Culture and Community Development Cecilia Chazama during the launch of Malawi’s Book Festival in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe.
In her remarks, Chazama requested all authors to write in vernacular languages such as Chichewa, Tumbuka and Yao to help local Malawians to easily read and understand the books.
The minister said that a book is a strong symbol of freedom of expression hence a great tool to adopt ideas from different people on how to develop a country.
Chazama stressed that if many books can be written in local languages, illiterate women who are exploited can know their rights through reading such books and can be making sound approaches against people who take advantage of their illiteracy.
She said this when she was appreciating efforts of women from Namisa reading club from Lunzu who were also present at the opening ceremony.
Speaking at the same function, National Librarian at National Library Services Grey Nyali said the book industry has been greatly challenged and affected by the dominance of televisions.
Nyali further said that reviving the industry and reading culture depends on parents’ efforts to read with their kids, listen to their children reading and take their kids to the library or buy books and put them in their homes.
The festival which is under the theme “A book at home: a partner for life” has been organised by Book Publishers Association of Malawi (BPAM) and will take place from 10 -12 August.
The aim of the festival is to bring together book writers, publishers and librarians to discuss how best to promote reading culture in Malawi.