literacy development in Africa has taken a note of urgency as the countries strive to attain the literacy targets of Education for all (EFA) as well as the education objectives of the Millenium Development Goals (MDGS). Reading associations in Africa have since the late 1990s been playing a prominent role in the efforts to eradicate illiteracy on the continent. aided by the International Reading Association (IRA) and the International Development in Africa Commitee (IDC-A) of IRA, they have been actively involved in literacy research, conferences, teacher development workshops, book publications and advocacy programmes. Leading the African reading associations in this titanic struggle against illiteracy is the Reading Association of Nigeria (RAN), the oldest, the biggest and the most vibrant reading association on the continent. Formed in 1982 and affiliated to IRA in 1985, RAN has established a track record of activities in the field of literacy development. it has produced three of the five chairs of IDC-A to date, it has also contributed significantly through its expatriate teaching force in the development of reading associations and programmes in several African countries, including Botswana and Swaziland. Its contingents to be biennial Reading for all conferences of IRA and IDC-A often constitute 50 percent of those assemblies. From Johannesburg in 1999 to Ghana in 2007, the story has been the same. However, it is in the area of publication of literacy development books and materials that RAN's impact has been felt most, given the dearth of relevant and up-to-date books in Africa. This has led to consistent publication of literacy and reading in Nigeria since 1985 besides monographs, manuals, children's books and textbooks in the area. Nigeria contributors are a dominant force Africa in contributions to IDC-A and IRA publications. when the International Reading Association decided to support book publication among affiliate countries and members in Africa, Nigeria responded with Teaching Reading in Nigeria, edited by Emeka Onukaogu, Arua Arua and Toyin Jegede. Now it has come up with another volume that is set to contribute further to literacy development in Nigeria and Africa. as the current chair of the International Development Commitee in Africa, I am particularly thrilled by the release of Tropical Issues in Literacy, Language and Development. it is a book that highlights critical issues in the area of literacy development, mother tongue education and national development. we elected to be associated with it at the continental level because it will also be releveant to sister reading assoications in Africa. Apart from providing views and experiences which are familiar to people on the continent, it would also serve as stimulus to the other affiliates in Africa to collect the research and accumulated experiences of their members in handy paperback books that will be much more affordable than imported ones. in commending my Nigerian colleagues for this effort, i warmly recommend Tropical Issues in Literacy, Language and Development to policy makers, education planners and managers, teachers and the general public to study and borrow implementable ideas from.