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Minister of Education, Professor Ameyaw-Akumfi



Mr. Chairman, Participants from Ghana, Our Overseas visitors, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, it gives me great pleasure to be here this morning to deliver the keynote address at this historic seminar on Book Donation. I am glad that despite the fact that books are donated to several countries in this world, you chose Ghana as the venue for this international conference. It shows how high Ghana is placed on your donations list, and we are very appreciative of that.

As in the case of all development aid, we in Ghana cherish the assistance we have received in the form of book donations by individuals and organizations. Although we do not want to depend solely on donations, we also appreciate the benefits of these donations. That is why the government is initiating steps to develop the local book industry so that it is able to provide most of our reading requirements in Ghana. In the area of Textbook Development, the policy of the Government includes an active private sector involvement in the implementation of a sustainable book development production and distribution system.

It is the governments' intention to leave a legacy of an excellent educational system capable of serving the needs of the country. This of course, includes an improvement in the school system as well as a renewed emphasis on library development. As you and are aware, none of these lofty aims can be achieved without books. That is why your deliberations at this seminar is so important to my Ministry the final report of the seminar. I shall be very interested in the final report of the seminar.

Mr. Chairman, Ladies and gentlemen, while showing the Governments' appreciation to book donors for their assistance, I must also caution on the need to be circumspect in the type of books donated to schools and libraries in the country.

There have been a few instances when donated books are so worn-out that they cannot be used in our schools and libraries. At other instances, several copies of irrelevant titles have been donated which have little or no bearing on the curricula of our schools. It is therefore my hope and desire that this seminar will address these and other similar issues.

Once again, on behalf of the Government of Ghana, my Ministry and also on my own behalf, I welcome you all and wish you very successful deliberations. I also wish our visitors an enjoyable stay in the country.