World Book Day 2022: Ikorodu authors praise the book; residents make excuses for not reading it.
Every year on April 23rd, World Book and Copyright Day are observed. Books have been known to be an invaluable source of development to society, and as this year’s theme reads, “Read, so you never feel alone,” it indeed goes to show how much value books have to individuals.
Paul Ojo resides in the Maya part of Ikorodu and has three books to his credit: Achieve More, Unmask, and The Lion and Lamb, which he has written, and innumerable books which he has read. To him, books are the secrets to excelling in any field one finds oneself in.
“Reading books is one of the secrets of people who excel in their fields. They have come to the understanding that one of the gateways to their success in life is to read books and seek understanding.”
He was asked what impact being an author of books and providing a source of reading for people had had on his life. He said it drives him to read more, especially seeing how his first two books opened up relationships for him in some African countries.
“Firstly, it drives me to read more. My first two books opened doors in some African countries for me. They also boosted my respect among my colleagues and, of course, served as a source of income for me,” said Paul Ojo.
Olalekan Elijah, resides in the Agric community and has written one book, The Fire Within, with more to come from him, he said.
To him, being an author has enormous value, as the feeling of having people bless and increase in value through your works is gratifying.
“Being an author has great value as people get to be blessed and increase in value through your work. That alone has a satisfying feeling in your heart,” his words.
Ikorodu Residents on Reading Books
He operates a cybercafé in the heart of Ikorodu market. Emmanuel Renner opens his cyber café from Monday to Saturday, and due to the volume of activities he is confronted with, reading is distant history for him.
“Reading books with this business?” he giggled. Where is the time? I used to love reading. I’m not a bookworm though, but I did read back then. But then, responsibilities came, and one had to shift focus to what matters now as regards family and business.”
Adejoke Ahmed, a middle-aged woman, also stated that her reading is low, attributing it to family responsibilities and business.
Reading is good, but there is no time and no drive to read. Even if I pick up a book now, within a few minutes, I will drop it. “
Blessing Ighodalo, a fresh graduate of the Lagos State Polytechnic, said that for her, the last time she read a book was in March, adding that she has an ebook on her phone which she is going to be making time out to read soon.
“For me, I love reading. Books have brought me value, made me develop myself in various areas, and added to my persona by and large. The last time I read was in February. But there is a novel on my phone right now that looks very interesting, and I will be making time to read it soon.”
The Authors’ Take on Reading
Being an avid reader over the years, Ojo affirmed that reading books imbues one with the ability to think beyond the superficial and helps one make better choices in life.
According to him, Ikorodu residents and Nigerians in general should keep reading and reap the benefits of its various benefits.
“Reading is a vital secret that guarantees a continuous change of level. There are too many books about lazy people struggling to get things done just because they neglect the vital things that can bring their desired results.
“The power of a book consists of its ability to make you think beyond the superficial. “It transforms you from good to better and great to greater,” Ojo asserted.
For Elijah, books have given him so much knowledge and elevated mindsets, both of which have given him a wider scope of life.
He urged the Ikorodu residents to read more to acquire better exposure, more balanced views on issues and improve the depth of their thoughts.
‘Nigerians are reading, we only need to do more’ – Publisher
Writer, author, and publisher, Victor Adeniyi, remarked that, as against the popular belief that Nigerians don’t read, Nigerians do, cautioning, however, that there are rooms to do better.
He said that the theme of World Book and Copyright Day is apt considering the torrent of issues we are faced with in the country, and how depression is likely to creep in on that account.
“Getting by in this country every day can be a struggle. Everyone knows the country’s not economically favourable to the masses. Even right here in the publishing business, we are feeling the impact as authors hardly print their books again due to the cost of printing that keeps soaring every day. So for the theme, it is apt. Books have been known to be good companions, and when troubling thoughts come and might want to bring one down, people should always remember that they can take books to distract themselves from overthinking and sliding into depression.”
He attributes it to understanding, realistic goal setting, and commitment, and he attributes it to family, work, and business.
“Many people don’t understand the value of reading. If you don’t understand the value of something, you will hardly carry it out. People should understand that books are extremely valuable to them because they can gain knowledge from them that will help them improve their lives as parents, business owners, or even careerists. There is a book for everyone out there, and it is even proven to be a health booster.
“Also, people need to set realistic reading goals and not just go about saying they want to read 5 books per month or 30 books per year. If it is one they can do for one month, it is fine. If it is one for two months, it is also fine. They should only make it a habit to read a book every two months; that is ideal and practicable for anyone, regardless of their schedule. Commitment is also important, as if you don’t commit to anything, you will hardly carry it out.”