Ouagadougou has its cinema, Abidjan has music, Dakar has fashion and Conakry has books. The book is the collective value that Guinean shares. This year, the 7th edition of the 72Hour was dedicated to climate change and the environment. The event mobilized from April 23rd to 25th on the Bluezone of Kaloum, youth, representatives of diplomatic missions, Guinean and foreign writers, booksellers and publishers.
We interviewed Mr Sansy Kaba, Director of the publishing house L’Harmattan Guinea and creator of the 72H of the book.
This 7th edition federated more collaboration than the previous ones, why do you think it is necessary to work with other countries, embassies, other publishing houses…?
The book is everybody’s business. The city as a whole and each of its actors are concerned with issues of literature. It is the educational value of a nation that is at stake, and everyone has to play its part in contributing to the establishment of a collective culture of the book. Like other book fairs, the desire to share and pass on the love of reading is done by collaborating with several entities. This year Ivory Coast with its group of specialists on the subject participated in the event. This also strengthens the friendly relations between Guinea and other countries. Next year Congo will be the guest country and the year after Senegal. We work together for more efficiency, mobilization and awareness.
It’s been 7 years since you organize the 72 hours of the book, what impact this major event have on the level of general education of the population and the importance of reading in our society?
With the 72 hours of the book, we have monthly events related to reading and writing in schools and public spaces. The literature awareness lasts 365 days. Regarding the mobilization and figures the first edition was about a thousand visitors. Last year we had 30,000 people. This year we believe that the 72 hours of the book have attracted over 50,000 visitors despite political problems. Constantly new writers are edited and published. We also found that there’s a lack of space dedicated to reading. We are conducting procedures to create read points all over the city. Let us not forget that this is the whole city that mobilizes to host this event and said mobilization told awareness.
Why did you choose the Bluezone to host this event?
The Bluezone is the ideal place to receive this type of event. The multifunctional space has enabled us to organize in one place and at the same time with all the material at our disposal various events such as sales exhibitions, writing workshops, performances, lectures, sports activities … We are very pleased to have a new partner for this noble cause. Congratulations to the Bolloré group for its social initiatives.