Nigerian authors beg FG for endowment funds

President, Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), MALLAM DENJA ABDULLAHI

The Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) has appealed to the Federal Government to create an endowment funds for writers to overcome the high cost of publication of books in the country.

Malam Abdullahi Denja, the National President of ANA, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.

Denja noted that the major challenge faced by writers in the country in bringing out good books to the public was finance.

Denja, who said most writers had to finance publication of their books themselves, stressed that the financial status of most writers was nothing to write home about.

He added that publishers would not publish unless the writer made serious financial commitment.

Denja also explained that publishers, too, have their challenges.

“For example, prices of printing materials and other consumable required in publication in the country have gone up.

“Most of the printing materials are not sourced locally; they are imported; it makes the cost of publication very high which is transferred to the author who has to pay.

“The Federal Government should support authors with endowment funds or grants to encourage them to write books that will educate and entertain the populace.

“Similarly, government should also support in terms of reduced taxes, excise duties or waivers for publishers so that the cost of publication is brought down.

“This will make books cheaper; many people will buy them at a cheaper price; it will lead to higher sales for the publishers and high royalty for the authors.

“The government will also benefit because, the publishers and authors will pay taxes to the government, thus boosting revenue of the country,’’ Denja said.

The ANA president also urged government to step up efforts in the area of copyright so as to avert the issues of copyright infringement against authors in the country.

According to him, if copyright issue was not checkmated, government will lose a lot of revenue that is supposed to emanate from publishers and authors.

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