Ace librarian, Professor (Mrs.) Felicia Etim is billed to headline the 2021 Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Network of Book Clubs and Reading Promoters in Nigeria is scheduled to hold from September 16-19, 2021 in Uyo, capital of Akwa Ibom State. Etim, who is the University Librarian at the Federal University, Otuoke, Bayelsa, had before now served a similar position at the University of Uyo and was the founding Director of Akwa Ibom E-Library. She would present the keynote address at the conference.
She will speak on the conference theme ‘The Place of Public Libraries in the Age of e-Books and Challenge of Social Reading.’
Another librarian who will assist Prof. Etim is Dr. Nkem Osuigwe, who is the Director, Human Capacity Development and Training, African Library and Information Associations and Institutions (AfLIA) based in Accra, Ghana. She had previously served as the Director of, Nigerian Book Foundation and Anambra State Library Board.
She was also the Secretary and Chairperson of, Anambra State Chapter, Nigerian Library Association where she led the State to win the Best Chapter Award consecutively for three years. She also served as Chair, Public and Community Libraries Section AfLIA, Mentor INELI-SSAf Cohort 1 & 2, and Coach AfLIA Leadership Academy, Cohort 1 & 2. She represents AfLIA on the Management Committee of the UN SDG Book Club, African Chapter. She believes that public Libraries as the truest democratic institutions in any community have the power to transform lives as they propel the connection of people to knowledge, ideas, skills, and opportunities for better living.
Nkem is widely traveled and has many publications and conference presentations to her credit. She is married to Prof. Andy Osuigwe, a pediatric surgeon.
According to the reading promotions and books advocacy body, the event is scheduled to hold at Watbridge Hotel and would feature a conference, reading sessions, sightseeing, and performance events. Other speakers at the conference include the President of the Nigerian Publishers Association, Chief Uchenna Cyril Anioke, and the University Librarian at the University of Uyo, Professor Ahiaoma Ibegwam.
Goodwill messages are also expected to be delivered by book trade organizations and lovers of books and reading.
Established in February 2020, the Network of Book Clubs and Reading Promoters in Nigeria “has continued to position itself as a platform for galvanizing disparate book club energies in the country by also engendering more activities that would be beneficial to the book sector and the country,” according to its president, Mr. Richard Mammah, who is also a writer and publisher.
Member clubs that make up the Network include Oleh Book Club, Uyo Book Club, Asaba Reading Club, Ignite Africa Leadership Foundation, iRead Mobile Library, Arepo Book Club, Raffia City Book Club, Eket Book Club, PEA Foundation, SmartBook Club, Warri Book Club, and Osogbo Book Club.
Others are Aba Book Club, Bookworm Cafe, Atiba Book Club, CRIMMD Free Public Library, CSS Book Club, Ibadan Book Club, Laterna Book Club, Ikorodu Library Book Club, Lead Out Education Foundation, Openway Reading Awareness Initiative, Readland Leadership Children’s Centre, Writers in Motion, Pens, and Voices Book Club, Read2Me Book Club, Nigeria Literary Society, The Bibliotheque Nigeria, The African Writers Tribe and The 1402 Book Lounge.