By Geoffrey Rono
The biggest publishing event in Kenya, the Nairobi International Book Fair, that ran from 26th September to 30th September 2012 at the Sarit Centre, Nairobi, was awash with literary delights. It was officially opened by the Assistant Minister for Education, Calist Mwatela.
In keeping with our tradition of excellence in research and scholarship, Oxford offered a wide variety of publications, both educational and for general readership, thus attracting huge crowds to our stand.
A key event organized by Oxford was the Lower Primary Teachers’ Seminar, The A to Z seminar, themed A solid foundation in languages. The objective of the seminar was to make teachers appreciate how pupils at an early age can use a dictionary and a kamusi for language acquisition. Another popular event was the ‘Revision Clinic’ aimed at equipping Standard Eight pupils with tips on effective study skills and examination skills as they prepare for their final examinations.
Throughout the event, visitors to our stand got an opportunity to commemorate Barbara Kimenye of the Moses series and Frank Odoi, cartoonist and humourist. Lots of visitors paid tribute to the fallen writers and signed designated memory boards.
Our readers and dictionaries proved quite popular among both adults and young readers. Visitors to the stand just couldn’t have enough of them!
Our title, We Come in Peace by David Mulwa was among the three shortlisted titles for the Wahome Mutahi Literary Award. The OUP EA stand won Overall Theme Interpretation and Best Stand Overall -1st Runner-up.
More than 27,000 book enthusiasts visited the Book Fair. 67 exhibitors participated, among them were 16 from foreign countries.