November 03, 2022
SPEECH DELIVERED BY ADAMU ADAMU, HONOURABLE MINISTER, FEDERAL MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AT THE 41ST ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION/2022 ANNUAL CONVENTION OF ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIAN AUTHORS (ANA) AT THE MAMMAN VASTA WRITERS' VILLAGE, MPAPE ON 28TH OCTOBER, 2022.
It is my sincere privilege and honour to address you at the 41st Anniversary Celebration/2022 Annual Convention organized by the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) which has the theme "Literature and National Consciousness: The story as a Catalyst". I commend the Association for organizing this convention and specifically for the theme of this year's celebration.
2. As we are aware, Literature is a mirror through which writers see and recreate their societies. It reflects the hard realities of human lives and unfolds in real terms, the socio-political, cultural, economic, and religious realities of a people. Literature has over time become an important aspect of human life in the quest to adapt and understand our enigmatic world better. It has become pertinent and crucial to man in his efforts to make the most important assessment of the values of his past, and present and articulate his future.
3. The merits of literary works abound as they are means of exposure and self-expression through which societal values, dreams, and aspirations are brought to the limelight for a thorough and patriotic appraisal. Literature gives insights, ideas, and information, pointing at the right track and direction through which man and society can find the measure of peace they so desire. National consciousness reflects the attitudes, thoughts, and perceptions of life typical of a nation. It is the ideas, and attitudes regarded as characteristics of a nation. It involves the establishment of norms and practices peculiar to a nation through which such a nation can attain its desired height of social development, political reformation, cultural upliftment, academic expansion, economic boom, and religious stability. It is therefore important to increase the national consciousness of literary works which would act as a catalyst to ensuring that we have a better society.
4. I have no doubt that Literature can act as a catalyst and a formidable way through which writers and scholars can express their nationalist consciousness and belief in the future development of the nation so that all the vices which militate against the development of Nigeria can be reduced to the barest minimum level. Literary works can be assessed by readers either online or in libraries. It should be noted that some online works are free while others are not free.
5. Studying literature allows young people to develop the ability to think critically from a range of different theoretical perspectives as it stimulates their minds, and encourages creativity and expression. Through books, our students will learn about various historical events and start to understand a wide range of cultures. Essentially, English Literature will help students understand different experiences from a variety of viewpoints, helping them to become more open-minded and empathetic. It would broaden their horizons and allow them to understand the world around them on a deeper level which is in line with the Federal Ministry of Education's mission of using education as a tool for fostering the development of all Nigerian citizens to their full potential.
6. Finally, I wish to commend the efforts of the National Executive body of the Association for their concerted efforts in organizing this important convention and I say congratulations on the strides achieved by our writers.
7. Thank you, and God bless you all.