51 years after independence, 50 libraries, adult illiteracy 27.5%

Kibanga Ampiga Mkoloni

JF-Expert Member
Aug 9, 2007
[h=2]51 years after independence, 50 libraries, adult illiteracy 27.5 %[/h]

By Waryoba Yankami

4th December 2012



Prof Mugyabuso Mulokozi

On average, around 27.5 percent of Tanzanian adults can neither read nor write, reports the Word Bank and with that being the case, stakeholders are pointing accusatory fingers at the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training.

They fault the ministry for failing to authorize and procure books aside from those that are listed for the school curricula, a fact that is allegedly demoralizing local authors and denying students a wider scope of available knowledge.

Writers complain that there is no market for local books and the little there is marred with low prices and all that is been blamed on the alleged lack of a reading culture among Tanzanians.

Prof Mugyabuso Mulokozi made the remarks yesterday during a training session to students who won an essay writing completion organized by the Institute of Reading and Development (SOMA) in Dar es Salaam.

As far as Prof. Mulokozi is concerned, there has been no opportunity availed by the government nor the community to its authors and students to write and to read more respectively except of course for what they receive in class, a situation the professor called ‘dangerously tragic’.

The local market is currently flooded with foreign books and that Prof. Mulokozi believes is of little use and even detrimental to Tanzanians. He is also of the opinion that the few libraries in the country is one of the undermining factors.

SOMA Director, Demere Kitunga mentioned another challenge facing authors as, the ever changing curriculum and corruption in the procurement process that results in the favoring of certain authors and not others.

The SOMA institute conducted creativity writing and reading completion across the country and the selected winners attended on writing seminars conducted by renowned authors.

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