A recent research conducted across the country in various schools particularly at the lower primary levels indicates that about 51 percent of the pupils cannot read in both English language and the other local dialects.
Only two percent of the research respondents can, however, read to understand and answer questions from passages in textbooks.
The Ashanti Regional Director of Education, Mary Owusu Achiaw made this known at a durbar at Sanso in the Obuasi Municipality of the Ashanti Region.
She highlighted some factors identified by the Ghana Education Service through periodic monitoring to be accounting for the poor reading habits of pupils.
These include the non-motivating attitude of teachers towards reading as well as the limited reading periods on timetables of schools.
Another factor observed with worry by the Regional Director of Education is the hoarding of reading books donated by international donor agencies such as the UK Department for International Department, by the authorities of some schools.
This, she noted, had caused such agencies and organizations to withdraw support in this direction.
Mrs. Owusu Achiaw, therefore, admonished authorities of schools exhibiting such behavior to put an immediate stop to it. She again emphasized the need for teachers to adopt new techniques to motivate students to read especially at the primary level.
A retired educationist, Mrs. Sophia Awortwe noted that through continuous reading, pupils would become knowledgeable on a wide range of relevant issues to manage for instance the environment, which according to her is gradually losing its richness due to illegal human activities and the effects of climate change.
She, therefore, advised parents and guardians to encourage their wards to read books regularly when at home instead of allowing them to watch television programs which have no good moral values.