Sissala East Municipal: The Sorry State of Our Library

According Wikipedia’ ’A library is a collection of sources of information and similar resources, made accessible to a defined community for reference or borrowing. It provides physical or digital access to material, and may be a physical building or room, or a virtual space, or both’’.

Yes indeed, we have a physical building supposedly a home to sources of information and knowledge. This ought to be made accessible to the people especially knowledge seekers in the Municipality.

The Sissala East Municipal library was commissioned on the 14th of July 1998 by her Excellency Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, who then, doubles as a first lady and also the president of the then 31st December Women’s Movement.

Since the inception of the library, knowledge seekers, mostly students thronged the facility to read, research and borrow books for use at their leisure time.

As years pass by, the state of the facility gradually deteriorates as one could hurriedly see defaced building, books lying on the bare floor, non- functional toilet facility, and lack of running water, broken down shelves leaving the facility in a state of ghost house. These above mentioned and many more challenges have resulted in the facility being unattractive to patrons though knowledge not depending on beauty of sources but there should be a conducive environment to study.

Non-Governmental Organizations such as Save-Ghana, Actionaid Ghana and others have in the past made concerted efforts in reviving the library by advocating for the inculcation of reading habits into our teeming youth both schooling and non-schooling, all these efforts have had very little or no complement from government and hence still leaving a vacuum to be fixed.

Despite the its deplorable state, the facility still remains second to the biggest library which is the new complex Regional library. Ever since the running of the Municipal Library has been entrusted into the care of the District Assembly, little or no significant contribution has been made by both current and previous administrations led by the MCE and this, to every concerned person is a cause to worry about so far as education in the Municipality is concerned.

The academic performance especially among the BECE AND WASSCE In the Sissala East Municipal is nothing to talk home about and this remains a fact till date. Information gathered from different sources indicate that, there is a poor reading habit among pupils and this has largely being the resultant effects of poor performance in all subjects during examinations.

More worryingly is, an entity by name GIFEX  a fully functional  internet facility has been installed in the library for use by pupils but their intention is being thwarted by the absence of electricity in the library due to non -availability of money to purchase units

Sissala East Municipality can boost of professors, PHD, Master’s degree, degree, HND, Diploma, certificate holders in the educational ladder and yet, none of these listed categories of people could come together or as individual help give a face lift to this library as a way of giving back to society.

Another worrying trend is, bodies such as the Municipal Assembly, Sissala Youth Forum, traditional council and Sissala Union all do organize forums ostensibly to dine and wine and perhaps pretending to galvanize solutions to the poor performance among our school children but have never thought of the state of the library or even delved into the poor reading habbits among pupils. All they do is to lambast teachers as if the teachers have keys to the brains of their pupils. They have never donated books to the library; they have never put a paint on the walls of the library. The most annoying and disappointing is those mentioned above who took booty of the rosewood felling and yet could never help to resuscitate our library but rather pretend to be concerned about the youth.

We are gradually losing our teeming youth to drugs and if care is not taken, will be breeding thieves and prostitutes sooner than later. Our youth instead of spending their leisure time reading whether they have exams to write or not would rather indulge in the abuse of drugs (wee, tramadol etc) both males and females

Thankfully to our two hard working Liberians, who have endured with the sorry state of the facility by trying to put shape to it. School children now a days, patronize the facility  because old books have be conveyed from the old regional library to our Municipal library though lack of shelves have compelled the care takers to dump them on the bare floor it at least have made the library stocked in a way.

Parents now buy mobile phones as gifts to their children instead of books. So called wealthy men and women of the land drive in luxurious cars every December from down south just for praise showering from the youth and would not carry a single book for the library. What A Shame to them! Professors flaunt on facebook with their philosophical sayings and cannot donate a single book they have published to their own Municipal library.

Sissala scholars have written papers but not a single copy can be found in our libraries. What a Shame!

The library needs the following items: new books, new shelves, electricity to power the internet, running water and toilet facility, and painting.

You can divert your annoyance after reading this, to just helping to solve the above mentioned challenges.

We are therefore calling on individuals, organizations and corporate bodies, philanthropies to come to our aid and help resuscitate our only library. The youth are ready to read.

Let us erase the shame from our land. A big shame!

Ayamga Bawa Fatawu is a community development practitioner, a Freelancer, Rural Reporter/blogger . He is also a Youth Activist and an environmental advocate. Being the administrator of www. Ghstories.com, Consumed by passion to serve the vulnerable and less privilege in society he gives voice to voiceless and also craves for attention from duty bearers to the plights of the most deprived areas in the country. He also has experienced in child protection having worked with an International Non-Governmental Organization . You can contact him via Phone Number :+233(0)-243154092/203810156 Email :sbloga@yahoo.com

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