The Ghana International Book Fair 2018 was held at the Accra International Conference Centre from Thursday, 30th August to Sunday, 1st September, 2018. The theme for the fair, which was running for the 16th year, was “Revitalising the Book Chain for National and International Cooperation.”
The Ghana International Book Fair has been growing from strength to strength since it returned in 2003. This year the fair would host a record 92 exhibitors with 81 from Ghana and 11 coming from out of the West African country’s borders. The foreign participants came from India, UAE, Israel, Kenya, Guinea, Côte d’Ivoire, South Africa, Nigeria and Niger. A total attendance of 8,700 was recorded over the period of the fair.
The opening ceremony was hosted at the Accra International Conference Centre on Thursday 30th August, 2018. The program was chaired by Mohammed Adjei Sowah, the Mayor of Accra Metropolitan Assembly with Dr Ziblim Iddi the Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture as guest of honour. Richard Crabbe, the former president of African Publishers Network (APNET) and the Ghana Book Publishers Association (GPBA), who is currently an international publishing consultant for the World Bank, gave the keynote address.
President of GBPA and Chairman of the Ghana International Book Fair Elliot Agyare in his remarks asked for a minute of silence in honour the late Prof Atukwei Okai, who until his demise was the Secretary General of the Pan African Writers Association. Also making remarks were Nana Kwesi Gyan Apenteng, Chairman of National Media Commission and President of the Ghana Association of Writers and Emmanuel Abimbola Abiola the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Publishers Association.
The event activities included workshops, seminars, reading sessions and other programmes.
There were workshops on open licencing, copyright, editing and E-Learning. One of the other workshops trained writers on the use of Bloom Software to create and publish more children’s books to enhance national and global literacy.
The Future of African Publishing forum.
A forum themed “The Future of African Publishing” was organized by the Association for the Development of Education in Africa /Global Book Alliance and African Publishers Network (APNET) during which discussions were held by African book industry stakeholders. The forum recognised the need for an effective continental coordinating body in the effort of revitalizing African publishing, to identify paths for APNET’s strategic organizational change and renewal.
The Literary Legends Evening.
The Ghana Book Publishers Association in collaboration with Ghana Reads! organized the Literary Legends Night to honour the late Prof Kofi Awoonor and the late Prof Atukwei Okai for their tremendous contribution to the literary industry in Ghana. The programme took place on the 1st September, 2018. There were series of performances to honour the two giants of the Ghanaian literary landscape. Tributes were given by friends and family and posthumous honour citations were presented to the late Prof Kofi Awoonor and the late Prof Atukwei Okai by the Ghana Book Publishers Association. The highly successful programme was attended by many of Accra’s dignitaries.
Other activities included the launch of the Ghana National Book Awards, the Read with Me Campaign, and an evening of Spoken Word/ Acoustic Music and Comedy with spoken word group Ehalakasa.
All images in this post were kindly submitted by the Ghana International Book Fair 2018 team.