Mr Edward Ayagle Ayiriba, Bolgatanga Municipal Chief Executive, made the call during this year’s International Children’s Book Day held at the weekend in Bolgatanga in the Upper East Region.
The celebration was to inculcate the habit of reading in children to upgrade their knowledge.
Mr Ayiriba said: “The Constitutional Mandate of MMDAs is overwhelming and this explains why the individual district assemblies should see the library service as one of their major functions to improving literacy rate.”
Mr Ayiriba expressed concern about the falling standards of education in the municipality and the inability of majority of students to express themselves in the English Language, which he attributed to the lack of reading culture among students.
The objective of the assemblies, he noted, is to arrest the declining standards of education and ensure that schools, especially the basic schools, turned out students who could read and understand what they read as well as to be able to express themselves fluently.
He, therefore, called on the MMDAs to ensure that they supported the furnishing of libraries, provision of adequate accommodation and logistics among other things to sustain library service for the benefit of present and future generations.
Mr Ayiriba called on stakeholders, including the Ghana Education Service (GES), non governmental organisations, and religious groups to be actively involved in library programmes so as to achieve the desired results.
He said: “As much as the Ghana Library Board is always the initiator of library service in the MMDAs, the GES should be the catalyst. The intervention of GES in the use of libraries by schools, which constitute the bulk literate population, should be emphasized.
“Without the intervention of GES, the schools are unlikely to patronize the service in an organised manner”.
Mr John Ayeseya, Regional Librarian, entreated parents to inculcate the habit of reading in their children and encourage them to patronize the library.
He commended the management of Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communication for providing the library with 10 computers with accessories for internet services and another set of five computers for the trekking van for rural services.
Activities to mark the occasion included poetry recitals, drama, reading, spellings, dancing and singing.
The occasion, which is celebrated annually, coincides with the celebration of Hans Christian Anderson’s Birthday, a famous author of children books who wrote about 156 children books.