The National Library and the National Archives of Namibia buildings will finally receive long overdue repairs and renovations as the African Development Bank has provided funding to the tune of about N$18.5 million to commence with the project.
Absalom Absalom, Public Relations Officer at the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture stated that the work will in July 2019 with an expected completion date of the end of March 2020.
He added that due to these renovations, there will be interruptions to services from time to time and that the ministry will inform the public when the institutions will be inaccessible due to the renovation.
The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture has prioritized the renovation due to the frequent downtimes that has been experienced by both institutions.
The N$18.5 million has been set aside to replace all of the water pipes, repair the fire sprinkler system, the electrical works and the overhauling of the air-conditioning system, amongst other repairs.
“The renovation process is very essential, in order to ensure that the country’s documentary heritage is preserved for research and for posterity.” Absalom said.
The National Library is a public research institution mandated by the Namibia Library and Information Act, Act number 4 of 2000 to collect, preserve and promote access to its collection, nationally and internationally. It also serves as the only National Bibliographic Agency responsible for the allocation of the International Standard Book Number / International Standard Serial Number (ISBN / ISSN), to publishers and authors of books, magazines or anything published in Namibia. The National Library contributes to the socio-economic, cultural, educational, scientific and innovative development of Namibia by collecting, recording, preserving and making available the national documentary heritage and promoting an awareness and appreciation thereof, by facilitating access to the world’s information resources.
The National Archives is the only Government Institution responsible for setting standards, inspecting records and ensuring all Offices, Ministries, Agencies and State-Owned Enterprises follow proper records management, as mandated by an Act of Parliament, the Archives Act, Act number 12 of 1992. It promotes efficient, accountable and transparent government through the proper management and care of government records. It houses the National documentary Heritage dating back to the 1800’s.