In Malawi, where five million people cannot read or write, commemorations of the International Literacy Day were held today at Mdeka Admarc Ground in Traditional Authority Chigalu in Blantyre district.
Minister of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare Jean Sendeza was presiding over the event.
Sendeza said literacy is important for the development of a nation. She added that government is committed to improving literacy levels in Malawi and she urged organisations working in the are of literacy to continue implementing their activities.
Statistics from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) show that five million out of the estimated 20 million people in Malawi cannot read or write.
According to a study by the United Nations (UN), two-thirds of all illiterate people in the world are females.
The study shows that this is due to factors such as insufficient educational opportunities for girls or the tradition in some countries for girls’ early marriage.
It was also estimated that 763 million young people and adults lacked basic literacy skills in 2020 despite efforts to deal with illiteracy in the world.
Every year, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) sets the theme for the year and this year’s theme is ‘Promoting literacy for a world in transition: Building the foundation for sustainable and peaceful societies’.
The theme seeks for a transformative power of literacy in shaping the future.
Globally, a conference is being held in person and online in Paris, France and the celebration will include the award ceremony of the UNESCO international Literacy Prizes to announce this year’s outstanding prizewinning programmes.