Footprint of David Unity Dancing Group at the 1st McMillan Youths Cultural Day in Lagos on May 31,2012.
Lagos (WorldStage Newsonline)-- The foremost publishers, McMillan Nigeria Publishers Limited on Thursday hosted its first Youths Cultural Day in Lagos.
The event with the theme: 'BREAK IT!—Removing Impediments to Youth Employment through the Promotion of Cultural Values', was its first edition to promote our cultural heritages, particularly the reading culture among the youths and prevent them from going into extinction.
The event which brought together different schools in the state for competitive cultural presentations was chaired by Alhaji Yusuf Saulawa.
In his address, the Chairman described the event as first of its kind in the country and emphasized the important of culture, particularly the reading culture within our social system.
“One can always notice a well educated and well read person from any crowd as such a person will be cultured and respectful in any and everything he or she does,” he said.
He believed that a well educated youth can stand on his own and create job for himself with his creative ability.
He lamented on state of reading culture among the youths of this generation which he said “seems to be diminishing”, and which he attributed to negative impact of Information Technology on the youth.
“It is rather sad, however, that these days, the reading culture, especially in the youths, seems to be diminishing,” he said.
“This has been brought about by the great strides made in the Electronic and Telecommunication sphere. There are now so many Radio and Television stations, terrestrial, cable and satellite; so also GSM and Ipads etc. with social networks of Facebook, Twitter etc. taking youths away from reading printed materials. Even the e-books that are readily available on line, the youths hardly bother to read, because they are mostly engaged I chatting with friends on the social networks.”
He said he was not seeing social network as evil, as it enhanced more effective communication, but to some young minds it offers escapism.
“This is a dangerous trend, which if not checked immediately may lead to youth delinquency and total obliteration of our very rich cultural heritage,” he waned.
He commended McMillan for the laudable initiative which he was optimistic will grow and impact greatly on the children.
He challenged the McMillan to make concerted effort to fish out young writers, who can speak the language of the youth.
He called on the youths all over the country to continue to uphold, uplift and develop our cultural heritage, and not allow modern development to eclipse and eventually obliterate it.
He also advised McMillan to further encourage books that marry both our past, and our present.
Igbobi College, Yaba came first among the 10 schools that participated at the Cultural presentation, while Kings and Queens Colleges jointly came second. The third position went to St. Luke Junior School, Bariga.
While giving his closing remark, the Chairman, McMillan Nigeria Publishers Limited, Mr.Bode Emanuel, expressed the commitment of the organization to continue publication of good books for the development of the youths.
McMillan has been at forefront in sensitizing the public and creating awareness in their main area of business i.e. publishing and creating knowledge, as the company has since 1999 been holding an Annual Literary Day for adults, the McMillan Youth Literary Day since May 2002 and McMillan Yoruba Literary Day since November 2004.