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The Honorable Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu on Thursday 22nd March 2018 inaugurated the twelfth Board of the National Library of Nigeria. The Board which is headed by Prof. Zainab Alkali was inaugurated alongside 18 others and two university governing councils, at the National Universities Commission, Maitama Abuja. In his inaugural speech, the Honourable Minister emphasized that as Chairman and Board members, they were expected to carry out their assignment with professionalism, dedication, sincerity and patriotism. He advised them to play their roles with skill and efficiency, being courageous, innovative and responsive. The Honourable Minister stressed that their leadership should engender transparency and accountability as well as endeavor to maintain appropriate and harmonious relationship with the chief executives and management of their various agencies. He further advised the board members to lead by example, to be disciplined and promote discipline, work hard and promote and reward hardwork. He reiterated the need for them to be guided by the rule of law and due process, and also to put public interest first and above personal interest so that positive and sustainable change would be entrenched in their various agencies. The 12th Board of the National Library on Thursday 22nd March 2018 paid an inaugural visit to the organization at its Headquarters in Abuja. While receiving the board members, at the National Library Corporate Headquarters, Central Business District Abuja, the National Librarian, Professor Lenrie Olatokunbo Aina warmly welcomed them, stating that they were distinguished individuals in their own rights who would add value to the organization. He informed the Board that the National Library of Nigeria was a Grade “A” Parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Education, established by Act No.29 of 1970, and was responsible for the development and provision of library and information services in the country. Professor Aina further informed the Board members that the National Library of Nigeria is structured into eight departments, comprising of five professional departments and three corporate departments and currently had branch operations in 25 states. The National Librarian while articulating some of the challenges faced by the organization which includes paucity of funds, dilapidated office accommodation, indiscipline among the staff, low level of legal deposit compliance and issuance of ISBN/ISSN, and appointment of directors, expressed optimism that the new Board would proffer solutions to the issues. The National Librarian while wishing the new Board a remarkable and successful tenure called on them to reposition the National Library of Nigeria to a greater height. In her response, the new Board Chairman, Prof. Zaynab Alkali said that she was glad to be part of the National Library of Nigeria having longed for it for about a year after her appointment as the Board Chairman. Prof. Alkali who is an author and a novelist said she had the library at heart and that she and her board members had a lot to do to take the National Library of Nigeria out of its present situation to its proper status as a national heritage. The Board according to her, would surely make an impact to show that a Board had been instituted. She assured Management that the Board will always be there for the National Library of Nigeria and would endeavor to ensure that the National Library of Nigeria had a befitting edifice. In their individual responses, the Board members stated that they were on the same page with the Chairman, promising to work together to uplift the National Library of Nigeria. Earlier, Barrister Aminu Ogaji, who is the Secretary to the Board, stated that their appointment was an important milestone in the history of the National Library of Nigeria. He briefed the members of the functions of the Board in relation with the management. He further stated that the Board occupied crucial position in the management of the organization having been created in the enabling Act. He therefore prayed God Almighty to give the Board members the strength and wisdom to carry out their responsibilities. Meanwhile, the Ag. Director, Human Resources and Administration, Mr. M. T. Mafiyai in a vote of thanks to mark the end of the session, requested the Board members to take into cognizance all that has been highlighted by the National Librarian in the areas of discipline and appointment of directors. He said that the Board had a lot to do in order to change the physical image of the National Library of Nigeria. He therefore called on the Board to ensure that in no distant time, the National Library of Nigeria would move to a befitting place so that intending donors who wished to donate books to the National Library of Nigeria would not hesitate to do so knowing that books donated are safe and secure.


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