A society without culture is as good as dead, so it is said; and a country that does not safeguard and promote its customs, values and norms loses the bond that unites it, making it vulnerable and exposed.
With that in mind, it is vital that the publishing and printing industry is supported to thrive given its role in national development, promoting and preserving culture. Leaving printers and publishers to helplessly face the current challenges in the sector is counterproductive in the long run as it could reverse the gains achieved in the country’s socio-economic transformation. This is because today more people have easy access to the Internet, consume foreign TV and radio materials that can influence our social value systems.
Coupled with today’s society that ‘lives’ on Facebook, Twitter and reading foreign literature, these are real threats. So, supporting printers and publishers to develop capacity and enhance their ability to propagate our treasured values, norms and traditions is everyone’s duty.
A struggling publishing industry should worry everyone as it could hurt the economy in the long-run because of its linkages to various sectors. There is no reason whatsoever why our printing needs should be addressed outside the country.
We should help the industry to stand on its feet to serve the country’s local publishing needs. We cannot succeed in addressing the challenge of a poor reading culture if our local publishing industry is struggling. Let’s jointly push for a vibrant publishing and printing industry that will address the needs of our society.
Otherwise, history will judge us harshly for failing to do something to boost the sector when we had the opportunity to do so.