Librarian calls for building of more public libraries

Mr. Frederick Noble Baada, Brong –Ahafo Regional Librarian of the Ghana Library Board (GLB), has called on chiefs, politicians, public servants, media and non-governmental organizations to collaborate and build more public libraries.

This, he said, would help inculcate the habit or culture of reading in children and open easy access to knowledge and developmental information to them.

Mr. Baada, who made the call in an interview with Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Thursday in Sunyani, said: “Majority of the people come here (library) for utility purposes, that is only to read for specific agenda. This happens after the achievement during their leisure and pleasure to help broaden their horizon.”

He noted that there was low patronage of the library among young females as against their male counterparts despite various interventions.

Mr. Baada said: “When they (females) reach their adulthood, patronage decreases”, and cited  culture and domestic chores as issues that prevent them from going to the library, unlike their male counterparts who are allowed to listen to radio and read newspapers, watch or play football and other games for leisure and pleasure.

Mr. Baada said following the establishment of book reading clubs by the GLB in the region last year, many children borrowed books from the library.

He said the number of borrowed books for research, examination, leisure and pleasure increased from 5,084 in 2010 to 6,351 in 2011.

Mr Baada said last year, 21,809 children; 12,776 girls and 9,033 boys borrowed books from the library.

He said: “Our children are so much interested in reading books judging from the statistics provided. We should encourage them and collaborate with stakeholders to help push the young ones. This will help them to attain moral lessons, education as well as exposing them to the larger world.”

Mr. Baada expressed regret about the decline in the patronage of the library by  adults, whom he said borrowed 36,788 books in 2010 but 35,996 in 2011, out of which females fared the worst, dropping from 8,413 in 2010 to 7,589 in 2011.

He cited problems facing the GLB at Sunyani as lack of adequate books, computers and other accessories, inadequate library furniture and called for the expansion of the Regional library.

Mr Baada appealed to Government to the complete the construction of the new regional library, which has become ‘a white elephant’ for the past eight years.

Source: GNA

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