Author:Tomomowo-Ayodele, Susanah O.


Publishing is a creative process through which different categories of books are published. It is a creative imagination of number of functionaries in the publishing house and those who are fairly distant especially the authors, freelance editors, designed compositors (typesetters), printers, paper and plate merchants, readers and a host of others. Therefore, it is appropriate to discuss publishing as a formidable succession of activities no one of which can by it be called publishing (Joseph, 2011).

Altbatch and Knight (2007) opined that publishing process coordinates with various processes needed to nurture from an idea in the mind of the author to a printed product available for distribution to the relevant audience. He further described publishing as the heart of coordination of multimedia of activities to produce books. that is dealing with selction, editing of manuscript, planning and supervising the process of transformation of the manuscripts into book.

Grannis (1957) opines that publishing is the intellectual and business procedure of selecting and arranging to make a book and of promoting its ultimate use. Ogunsola, (2005) noticed that publishing plays important role in the development of a nation and the publishing industry is the engine process of development of education, literacy, national culture and dissemination of knowledge which is the basic element in the democratic process of any nation.

Granis (1957) defined book publishing as "making public-to send forth among the people-the words and pictures the creative minds have produced, that editors have worked over, that printers have reproduced. He further explained it as "a formidable succession of activities no one of which can by itself, be called publishing. It is only when a manuscript has been transformed into a book and then distributed to its intended market place, that the process of publishing is complete.

The history of publishing in Nigeria can be traced to the Scottish Presbyterian Mission, led by Rev. Hope Waddell, who arrived at Calabar from Jamaica in 1846 bringing with him a lithographic press and a conventional press for letter press printing. He published the first printed materials in Nigeria in the same year namely "Twelve Bible Lessons" and "Efik Vocabulary". While the first Nigerian newspaper "Iwe Irohin" was published in Yoruba land in 1859 by the Methodist Missions at Abeokuta, the first, privately owned newspaper, "Anglo-African", was issued in 1863 by a Jamaican Immigrant named Robert Campbell. Hence, in the second half of the 19th century Nigerian printing and publishing were tied mainly to Newspaper Journalism. However, the first Nigerian commercial press the Tika-Tore Printing Works, not tied to newspaper publishing, was established in 1910 at Lagos.

However, these presses had a limited subject range and their major focus was on religious, topical, and political issues of the day. School texts, general and light readings and scholarly publications had to be imported, as the Nigerian school curricula were not very different from their European counterparts. Notwithstanding, to cater for the growing education system, the Oxford University Press (which later became known as University Press Ltd in 1978 as a result of the Nigerian Indigenization Decree of 1977) set up its branch in 1949 at Ibadan followed by the establishment of the Ibadan University Press in 1950 which became a full-fledged publishing outfit in 1955 as a result of the University Senate's decision. Ibadan University Press was followed by Onibonoje Press in 1958. Other indigenous publishers of consequence emerged in the 1960's and 1970's namely: African Educational Press, John West Publications, Fourth Dimension, Ilesanmi Press, the Ethiope Publishing Corporation and Northern Nigerian Publishing Corporation (NNPC) which was a joint state publishing venture, based in Zaria. There existed other "publishing" houses in Onitsha, Anambra State, which specialized in what is referred to as "Onitsha Market Literature" (Obiechina, 1973).

Also, worthy of note is the emergence of other Nigerian University Presses by the end of 1970's namely: Obafemi Awolowo University Press, University of Nigeria Press and University of Lagos Press; Ahmadu Bello University and University of Port-Harcourt Presses. All these scholarly publishing houses belong to the moribund Scholarly Publishers Association of Nigeria(SPAN) inaugurated in 1988 and open to all Nigerian University Presses, publishing divisions of Research Institutes, Professional Associations, Learned Societies and Commercial Publishers with scholarly interest. Other British firms that tried to control (and are still controlling) Nigerian Book Market before the indigenization degrees of 1977 are: Longman, Thomas Nelson, Macmillan, Evans Brothers and Heinemann.

This study therefore examined the impact of indigenous publishing on educational development in Nigeria: a case study of Macmillan Nigerian Publisher Limited, Literamed publications Nigeria limited, HEBN Publishers Nigeria Limited and Evans Brothers Nigeria Publishers. The contribution of indigenous publishers to educational development is enormous, but the industry is plagued with various challenges against its maximum realization of its roles in educational development in Nigeria. Contribution of Indigenous publishers to support research, teaching, and learning is obviously essential in educational development of Nigeria.

Specifically, the study will made an attempt to trace the historical development of indigenous publishing in Nigeria, examine the indigenous publishing and educational development in Nigeria, determine availability and accessibility of indigenous books in Nigeria educational sector, find out role of indigenous publishing on educational development in Nigeria, determine constraint to indigenous publishing development in Nigeria, proffers necessary solution on how to promote indigenous publishing in Nigeria and ascertain future challenges of indigenous publishing in Nigeria.

Problem statement

A national book policy was established in 1988 with recommendations for a national book commission that would ensure the publication of books of wider interest. There were a number of seminars, workshops, conferences, special interest groups, and task forces established or convened at the instance of government or international agencies interested in publishing and willing to do something about the book crisis. Most of the publications needed in the tertiary institutions, especially the universities for teaching and research, continued to be imported from the USA, South East Asia and Europe.

The 1978 Nigerian Enterprises Promotion Decree provided that at least 60% equity participation in book publishing must be by Nigerian nationals. With effect from that year, book publishing in Nigeria became indigenous, making it unnecessary to distinguish any longer between indigenous and foreign publishing in the country. Considering the enormous benefits and compliance with 1978 Nigerian Enterprises Promotion Decree, it became imperative to access the level of success that has been recorded. It is pertinent against this background for this research work to investigate the impact of indigenous publishing on educational development in Nigeria usingMacmillan Nigerian Publisher Limited, Literamed publications Nigeria limited, HEBN Publishers Nigeria Limited and Evans Brothers Nigeria Publishers as a case study.

Research questions

To achieve the objectives of the study attempt would be made to find answers to the following questions:

  1. Are indigenous books available and accessible in Nigeria educational sector?

  2. What is the impact of indigenous publishing on educational development in Nigeria?

  3. What are the constraints to indigenous publishing in Nigeria?

  4. What are the possible ways of promoting indigenous publishing in Nigeria?

  5. What are the possible future challenges to development of indigenous publishing in Nigeria?

    Brief history about the case study area

    1 Evans Brothers (Nigeria Publishers) Limited

    Evans Brothers (Nigeria Publishers) Limited is Nigeria's leading educational publisher. The company was incorporated in December 1966, to become a full-fledged Nigerian company known as Evans Brothers (Nigeria Publishers) Limited and it publishes titles for all levels of education. The company was issued a certificate of incorporation on 6 December 1966, with business taking off in earnest early the following year. Mr. Joop Berkhout was appointed its pioneer General Manager and...

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