By Jane Echewodo
BAYODE Treasures- Olawunmi, winner of the Guinness World Record for the “Longest Marathon Reading Aloud” has disclosed that Nigerians are ready to break a Guinness world record for the ‘most people in a reading relay.’
The actual country that has the record for the ‘most people in a reading relay’ now is India with about 3,071 people, meanwhile 13,670 Nigerians will be reading a sentence each from Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi, an American author. Treasures Olawunmi disclosed this on Friday at a seminar themed: Education and the Nigerian Child, at the Park Inn by Radisson Abeokuta Schools Debate Seminar.
Park Inn by Radisson in collaboration with Kola Obadimu Junior Brain House sponsored the annual Abeokuta Schools Debate. “The reading relay will be anchored by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, the Senate President and representatives from the National Assembly as well as governors. ”It will be read by over 13,000 people who will each read a sentence each from the book which has 13,670 sentences,” he said.
Treasures-Olawunmi while elaborating the importance of reading and education, however, stated that the operation of Boko Haram insurgents has seriously imparted a negative feeling on the development of education in the North-Eastern part of Nigeria. “No nation has ever attained development through sports and entertainment, but it has always been through and on the broad platform of deliberate quality education which spurs a healthy reading culture.
”The templates for national development are in books staring right in the faces of our African leaders and followers alike, but because we hate to read, our development of course, is stunted. The tools used in the dreaded war are children and young adults whose minds had been manipulated and radicalised due to lack of education. When children read and are educated, their minds are formed oftentimes for the right thinking and can discern for themselves what is wrong and what is right,” he said.
Also speaking, Prof. Kolawole Adebayo, a Professor of Rural Development Communication at the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, pointed out the criteria for selection of winners of the debate series. ”The judges look at the mannerism of presenters, strategy and coordination of participants in the selection of winners. The series started with twenty schools and the overall winner from Victorrotti School received an all expense paid trip to Kenya sponsored by Kenyan Airways.”
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