A book is a powerful source of knowledge and wisdom which societies rely on for both human and socio-economic development.
It is for this reason that Malawi will join the international community on April 23 to celebrate the World Book and Copyright Day.
Chairperson of Malawi Pen, a grouping of writers in the country, Alfred Msadala said the celebration will take place on Saturday at Malawi Sun Hotel in Blantyre.
The idea for celebrating the World Book and Copyright Day, which focuses on promoting reading, publishing and protection of intellectual property through copyright, was hatched on April 23.
The day is also symbolic for world literature which commemorates the lives and works of writers such as William Shakespeare, who died on April 23 1616.
Msadala said the celebration this year will focus on some of the pressing issues in the copyright and book industries.
“This year, we are looking forward to look into some of the issues that are affecting the growth of the book publishing industry in Malawi such as the status of publishing industry, copyright issues and opportunities and challenges of e-libraries,” said Msadala, adding that there will also be exchange of gifts and book donation.
He described books and reading culture as oxygen for mental and the country’s socio-economic development; hence, the need to promote the book and copyright industries.
According to a message from Irina Bokovad, Unesco director-general on this year’s World Book and Copyright Day, books are essential for development as they act as a bridge between generations and across cultures.
They also symbolise the diversity of human resourcefulness, giving shape to the wealth of human experience, expressing the search for meaning and expression that all women and men share, that drive all societies forward, she said.