By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Oyo State Chapter of the Nigerian Library Association (NLA) on Tuesday, urged the state government to implement National Policy on Education that stipulates that all schools must have libraries and qualified school librarians.
The outgoing chairman of the association in the state, Mr Adekoya Adebayo Osunkoya stated this in Ibadan while addressing a press conference to conclude year 2022 National Library Week / conference and Annual General Meeting of the Nigerian Library Association, Oyo State Chapter.
He stressed that this was part of the resolutions arrived at the 2022 NLA Conference, Oyo State Chapter, adding that the meeting also observed that school pupils are not given necessary library orientation, hence, they have not fully imbibed the concept of reading and relevance / usefulness of the library.
According to out going NLA Chairman, the conference noted dearth of data about school libraries and librarians in Nigeria and ” therefore, advocates urgent compilation of demographic details of practicing school librarians and available school libraries in Nigeria.
” Government is encouraged to implement National Policy on Education that stipulates that all schools must have school libraries and qualified school librarians. Oyo State Government must fund Oyo State Library Board adequately so that it can ensure that all schools in Oyo State have functional school libraries manned by qualified librarians”, he said.
Mr Osunkoya added, ” School administrators must ensure provision of libraries in their schools and provide effective support. Library structures in schools should be revitalised aesthetically, fully furnished and adequately equipped.”
” This year’s National Library Week, Conference and Annual General Meeting was held between 16th and 17th November, 2022 respectively with the theme “Revitalizing School Library System in Nigeria: the Way Forward”. The communique issued at the end of this year Conference was duly signed by the Conference Chairman, Prof. L. O. Aina, former National Librarian/CEO of the National Library of Nigeria, Communique drafting Committee Chairman, Dr Pius O. Olaojo of Department of Library, Archival and Information Studies, University of Ibadan, Ibadan and the NLA Chairman, Adekoya A. Osunkoya of the National Library of Nigeria”.
Speaking further, the out going Oyo state NLA Chairman said, ” the press conference is aimed at creating awareness for the association and librarianship profession”.
” Permit me to outline some of the activities that we embarked upon in the past year. We have successfully accomplished the following: organising seminars and conferences for our members to broaden their knowledge and to keep them abreast of current information in the profession.
” Webinar conference was organised for our members in September, 2020 on how to effectively render library service.awards were given to deserving members and non-members.timely release of useful information to our members enlightenment of the general public through radio and television programmes on the roles that librarians and libraries are expected play in the nation building and why the public and student should use the library for self- development. rendering of timely and useful services to our clientele both physically and online.”