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School Book Development Project moves to push publishing industry

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CONGRATULATIONS—Makwinja (2nd left hands over a trophy to Makukula

Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma) Executive Director, Dora Makwinja, said the School Book Development Project has achieved its intended objective in creating a skilled and sustainable local educational publishing industry.

Makwinja was speaking at Lotus Hotel in Blantyre on Monday during the School Book Development recognition awards.

“The project has enhanced and strengthened the relationship between authors and publishers. This project has provided the direction which all publishers, authors and editors should follow and where to get guidance,” she said.

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Makwinja hailed other partners for their support including Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and Malawi Institute of Education.

“They evaluated 20 manuscripts in the first phase of the project which were approved by Ministry of Education,” she said.

Makwinja said they were hopeful that publishers have learnt how to publish contextualised textbooks using local authors, editors, illustrators and designers.

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“Apart from this, we would like to (urge stakeholders) to utilise the local printers as the project has set the pace and use of local printers is one way of enhancing and creating a local educational publishing industry in Malawi,” she said.

According to Makwinja, the project will print 70,000 supplementary textbooks and that for phase one this year, they will print 39,000 textbooks.

“This project will also ensure that books are available with focus on emerging issues such as climate change,” she said.

History teacher Bright Makukula, came out tops with his book and said he was happy to have achieved this feat.

“This is a very important project. There is need to have more learning and teaching materials. We want this project to continue,” Makukula said.

Book Publishers Association of Malawi (Bpam) President Maureen Masamba described the project as a success in that they have managed to train different players in the publishing industry for its growth.

The School Book Development Project started in 2017 and runs up to 2021.

The project is funded by Kopinor of Norway and is being administered by Cosoma with support from Ministry of Education.

During the recognition awards, players such as publishers and authors received trophies and medals.

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