Jay FM News Commentary: The Deplorable Condition of Plateau State Library
Written by Joey Shekwonuzhibo on August 6, 2022
By Joseph Gilbert of the News and Current Affairs Department
Over the years, Plateau state parades so many things that define its beauty and make it a destination of choice for many Nigerians across the country and beyond.
One of them is the Plateau state library located in the city of Jos, the state capital.
The library established over 40 years ago used to provide a serene, conducive, and attractive reading atmosphere for scholars, tourists, and the general public alike.
It also provided succor for those who needed a quiet, comfortable, and friendly place for relaxation on account of its alluring beauty and appeal.
Regrettably, Plateau state Library is now a shadow of itself as many things have taken the shine off what used to be the envy of many people both within and outside the state.
A visit to the Library now shows a decrepit, and deplorable structure overshadowed by shanties and a chaotic environment that makes it difficult for any form of meaningful study, reading, or academic exercise to take place.
The investigation also reveals that in place of the hundreds of people who used to visit the library daily, the place can hardly boast of a handful of visitors per day, a development which has been attributed to a declining state of the building and its environment
As if that is not enough, the place has been taken over by traders, motor parks, and miscreants, who have turned it into hideouts for anti-social activities rather than reading and studying.
The situation is so pathetic that passersby who are not familiar with the building may take it for a motor park because of the large number of elements running up and down, scouting for passengers, and dealing in varying businesses with attendant noise pollution.
Sadly, this deplorable situation is yet to catch the attention of the state government under Governor Simon Lalong, with many citizens expressing concern over the situation
The such an unacceptable situation can not be divorced from the recent ranking by UNESCO which placed Plateau state in the unimpressive 19th position among the 36 states of the Federation and the FCT in terms of literacy rate
The importance of the library cannot be over-emphasized in any society.
As the gateways to knowledge and culture, the library plays a fundamental role in societal development as the resources and services they offer create opportunities for learning, support literacy, and education as well as help in shaping new ideas and perspectives that are central to a creative and innovative society.
Therefore, the Plateau state government must not allow the state library to lose focus of its traditional role but should take immediate action aimed at returning it to its former glory in the interest of the state and its people.