To begin with, let me delve very lightly into the concept of the library in Ghana.
The idea of the public library as an institution was first conceived by the first president of the Republic of Ghana, Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah with an eye to improve studies and to promote research in order to identify African skills and techniques to solve Africans problems particularly Ghanaians.
These facilities, according to the modalities ought to be instituted across the length and breadth of the country from public funds either holistically or partly, hence; the formation of the Ghana Library Board to run it. Per the policy outline, directors and board of trustees guided by a council of elders were appointed to administer the institution.
But it is very sad to note that there has been a paradigm shift in respect of the policy implementation. The intended purpose of this sane policy has still not been served. As it stands, most districts and municipals such as Ahafo Ano-North which recently attained a municipal status as a symbol of elevation obviously lack a well-resourced library which will enhance learning and also augment the processes to reduce the high illiteracy rate amongst the youth.
Growing up in this municipality, I could attest to the fact that, the community centre built some years ago had a library as an auxiliary facility and was patronised by loyal regulars but what necessitated the closure of the centre yet remain unknown, and I must confess, it is a terrible loss to the community.
Therefore, this call seeks to direct the attention of the authorities, whose mandate is to prioritize education for the benefit of our future leaders for quick intervention. There is no gainsaying that a library is a crucial centre in the educational development of individuals at any level and more specifically in any academic pursuit. It has for many occasions supported a lot of people to reach the highest rungs of the academic ladder.
In spite of all the usefulness of a library, individuals at the helm of affairs still act nonchalantly at the expense of ordinary citizens, who cannot afford the cost of reading and research materials. As an institution, the library preserves invaluable records of heritage that can be inherited by a rising generation.
Consequently, many of the youth have resorted to indecent behaviour in lieu of managing their leisure time well. However, there is an elbow room for improvement to remedy the situation with immediate effect.
To this end, I call on all stakeholders particularly the Ahafo Ano-North municipal Assembly to capture such an infrastructure in its medium-term development plan if indeed quality education is our priority as Dr. Nkrumah and the CPP government did.
(CPP- Ahafo Ano-North)