Esther Cobbah pushes for demystification of reading


… as Georgina Asare Fiagbenu launches maiden book

To revive the culture of reading, particularly among young people, conscious effort must be made to correct the erroneous assumption that reading is a chore that must be undertaken grudgingly, CEO of Stratcomm Africa and Communications Expert, Esther Cobbah, has said.

According to her, this can be most effectively achieved by linking the needs of readers to reading. She added that the hunger for knowledge has not waned over time, rather, it is the direction and approach to the acquisition of knowledge that has changed, and addressing this must be the first line of action.

Offering her thoughts on literacy and the reading culture at the formal launch of Georgina Asare Fiagbenu’s book, ‘The Wish List: Thoughts that can shape society’, she said: “We have to let people appreciate the importance of reading by linking their needs to reading… people are hungry for knowledge and must realise that there are no short cuts to gaining knowledge.

However, we must do it in such a way that they do not feel that it is an imposition; we must get young people to see that reading is not just an academic course but an important lifestyle tool.”

On the premier full-length work by Ms. Fiagbenu, which she launched, Ms Cobbah remarked: “I am proud that Gina has been able to capture her thoughts in writing… she is impacting society, not only by demonstrating that writing is important but also proving that analytical thinking and creativity are key.”

On her part, Ms. Fiagbenu who doubles as Senior Corporate Communications Manager at MTN Ghana   revealed that the book is a culmination of her writings on issues relevant to society. She expressed optimism about the future of literary endeavors in Ghana.

“I choose to write because reading and writing are such important activities in the life of people. Reading and writing stimulate the brain and open the mind to several possibilities in a way that cannot be ignored,” she stated.

She also hinted that having benefitted from the guidance of some of the greatest literary minds in the country, she is looking forward to aiding the next generation of writers.

Paying tribute to one such mentor, former Chairman of the National Media Commission (NMC), Nana Kwasi Gyan Apenteng, who was on hand to review the book, she said: “I began to observe numerous social issues that caught my attention and really bothered me. I started getting the burning ambition to try to do something about some of the issues which were largely attitudinal and developmental.

I decided to put my thoughts into action. I discussed it with my one of my mentors in journalism, Nana Kwasi Gyan Apenteng, who kept encouraging me to consider writing a column. One day he called and told me he had arranged for me to start a column in one of our national weekend papers. I ended up writing in a leading private newspaper and later I added a second paper.”

Also present at the event were president of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), Dr Affail Monney; MP for Twifo Atti Morkwa, Abraham Dwuma Odoom; former Country Manager of the British Airways, Esi Ano Sackey; journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni and a hearty representation from MTN Ghana.

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