Accra, Dec. 31, GNA – The Management of the Ghana Library Authority (GhLA) says it will expand the network of public libraries, renovates more libraries and increase its book stock in 2020.
The Authority in 2019 added 255,887 new books to its stock, representing a 40.50 per cent increase.
Mr Hayford Siaw, the Executive Director of the Authority, speaking at a press briefing, said the Authority has declared 2020 as the Year of Learning on the theme: “70 years of Transforming Minds through Libraries,” to commemorate its anniversary.
He said government has invested enough resources to support the Authority’s vision of connecting Ghanaians to knowledge resources through innovation.
“In 2019, our Year of Reading, we renovated 25 public libraries that were in deplorable states and increased our footprint from 61 to 70 libraries to enable the public to engage with our libraries,” he said.
He said the focus was to promote patronage of the libraries, while encouraging reading across the country.
“In our Platinum year, we want to be deliberate about knowledge and skills acquisition because we believe that the ultimate result of reading should be to acquire new or expand knowledge, while enhancing skills,” he said.
Mr Siaw said as part of their vision, they would enhance on technology, book stock, reading promotion, renovation and increase in public libraries.
In the area of technology, the Executive Director said, they would introduce innovative ideas that would improve reading and learning in the libraries across the country.
He said in 2019, the Authority developed a Digital Library application dubbed ‘Ghana Library App’, which automated its book processing operations, established a technology and innovation hub in Ashanti, Cape Coast and Eastern regions and connected all regional libraries to the internet.
He said the Authority would be awarding full scholarship to 1,000 Ghanaians to enroll on Udemy online learning platform, with support from Commonwealth of Learning.
“We also plan to set up Public and Senior High School libraries on our Integrated Library Management System,” he said.
On promoting reading, he said, “It will work with the media to disseminate information on reading and learning to create awareness about the existence of libraries and embark on a nationwide “Read Walk” in January 2020 to create awareness on reading.
He said the Authority would also organize literacy related programmes such as Personality Reads, Reading Festivals and establish more reading clubs.
Mr Siaw said the Authority made strides in its Year of Reading, 2019 and beyond renovating 25 of its public libraries and increasing footprint from 61 to 70, there is an upsurge in library patronage and membership.