Nigeria’s customer-friendly and innovative telecommunications company, 9mobile, has taken its passion for social development of its host communities a step further by donating books to the Isolo Public Library in Isolo community in Lagos State, and also launching a reading club to promote literacy, in commemoration of the 2018 World Book Day.
The World Book Day is a day set aside to encourage everyone, particularly young people, to discover the pleasure of reading. In this light, the telecom company has partnered with Lagos State Government to promote literacy and drive a healthy reading culture amongst the youth in the state.
During the visit to the state-owned library at Isolo, 9mobile delighted students, teachers, and officials of the library, with donations of books by renowned authors, including Chinua Achebe, Cyprian Ekwensi, Mabel Segun, and Jowhor Ile – winner of the 9mobile Prize for Literature 2016. The prize is the most prestigious pan-African literary prize that promotes and celebrates first-time fiction writers of African origin.
The donation of books by 9mobile further underscores its commitment to the development and promotion of writing and reading in Nigeria and Africa at large.
Speaking at the presentation of the books to Lagos State Library Board, Acting Director, Regulatory & Corporate Affairs, 9mobile, Oluseyi Osunsedo, said the benefits of book reading on national development are immense, noting that the telco is promoting a reading culture to support knowledge acquisition and retention in Nigeria, especially amongst the youth.
“For us at 9mobile, we are passionate about driving sustainable national development and making a positive impact in the lives of Nigerians. As a youthful brand, our product offerings and CSR activities firmly confirm our belief that the youth are critical to nation-building, and education is the bedrock of any nation’s development”, she stated.
Osunsedo added further that, “Education is the fuel that enables the youth to add value to their family, society, and country. By reading books, the youth are being educated, and are opening their minds to learn, develop and grow.
This is why we chose to donate books to mark the World Book Day. We have also gone a step further to establish a reading club at the Isolo Public Library, and this means we will continue to provide more books and ensure that the students and youth continue to improve themselves and make themselves invaluable to our society.”
Commenting while receiving the books, the Assistant Director, Lagos State Library Board, Asimiyu Oyadipe, commended 9mobile for the gesture and said the support was in line with government’s efforts towards the improvement of a reading culture amongst the residents.
“We thank 9mobile for collaborating with the Lagos State Government, it is in line with the efforts by the State government to improve the reading culture in the state. Lagos State Library Board promises to fully utilize these books, and we encourage like-minded corporate organizations to also reach out to our other libraries spread all over Lagos to replicate this goodwill and support”, he said.
9mobile has been at the forefront of promoting talent development especially by reawakening increased interest in literature, publishing and reading through 9mobile Prize for Literature now in its fifth edition.
The prize launched in 2013 awards £15,000 and an engraved Montblanc Meisterstück pen to the winner, in addition to a 9mobile-sponsored fellowship at the University of East Anglia where he/she will be mentored by Professor Giles Foden, author of ‘The Last King of Scotland’.
The winner and the two runners-up also participate in a multi-city book tour of three African countries also sponsored by 9mobile, while the telco purchases 1,000 copies of their books for distribution to schools, libraries and book clubs across Africa.