Authorities at the Techiman Municipal Library have bemoaned the lack of books and up-to-date reading materials at the facility.
The library which is the oldest and the largest in the Bono East Region serves Basic, Senior High and tertiary students in the area but has just a few books on its shelves and only 10 desktop computers in it’s spacious computer laboratory.
The situation, according to the Regional Director of the Ghana Library Authority, Charlotte Nsiah Tabiri does not encourage students to cultivate the habit of reading. It also hinders the undertaking of research.
“We have only a few books here and most of them are old and you know children love new books and due to this, they don’t get motivated to visit the facility regularly as they keep meeting same materials each time they come here,” she stated
She further noted that even though many libraries today are converting from manual to computerized systems, same cannot be said of the Techiman Municipal library which has enough space to accommodate more computers.
“We have ten desktop computers donated by GIFEC and the room is big enough to accommodate more than 30 desktop computers and so when the schools come, either they come in tens or they pair to use one computer,” she said.
This according to her, sometimes leads to fights amongst children who visit the library over the limited computers at the facility. “As you were seeing, the children were even fighting as to who should sit first because it’s not enough for them so they’ll always fight for it.”
“So when they come in, we have to give them just 30 minutes and when you are done with it, you have to get up for another person to also come but when we have more of the computers, the children will relax, sit for at least an hour, learn how to type using the Mavis Beacon, to paint, to use the Microsoft Word and what have you,” she added.
The Techiman Municipal Library has also introduced a book box policy where staff of the Authority visit schools with reading materials to be given to children who are interested in reading but according to her, this policy is heavily affected due to the absence of enough books.
“With Techiman been a regional capital now, I know plans are advanced to get us a regional library but as at now, if we’ve not gotten a static library in terms of structures, we need more books to go to the schools to share it amongst students and this would help them a lot.”