Ritchie li­brary ready, just wait­ing for power

The New Age (Northern Cape) - - NEWS - TNA RE­PORTER prov­inces@the­newage.co.za

THE de­part­ment of sport, arts and cul­ture has rub­bished claims that the Ritchie Li­brary had be­come a white ele­phant and it has not been used since com­ple­tion.

Spokesper­son Con­rad For­tune said the li­brary was com­plete and the only out­stand­ing is­sue was the elec­tri­cal con­nec­tion from Eskom.

“The con­trac­tor has al­ready paid the de­posit to Eskom for the con­nec­tion and the power util­ity pro­cesses are tak­ing are tak­ing longer than an­tic­i­pated.

“The li­brary will only be of­fi­cially opened once the elec­tric­ity is con­nected,” For­tune said.

The MEC Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gi­gaba re­cently an­nounced that R163m would be set aside for re­fur­bish­ment of com­mu­nity li­brary ser­vices in and around the prov­ince.

“The bulk of this al­lo­ca­tion will be utilised for the con­struc­tion for new study li­braries and the pro­cure­ment of li­brary ma­te­ri­als in the prov­ince as well as pro­fes­sional and devel­op­ment of ca­pac­ity in the sec­tor,” she said.

She said the al­lo­ca­tion of in­fra­struc­ture for the 2017­18 fi­nan­cial year was R35.9m with key fo­cus of bring­ing read­ing fa­cil­i­ties closer to the com­mu­ni­ties.

Dur­ing the may­oral out­reach pro­gramme in Ritchie the mayor of Sol Plaatje mu­nic­i­pal­ity Man­gal­iso Matika opened a state of the art in­ter­net cafe fully fit­ted with Wi­Fi, 10 desk tops and a prin­ter.

May­oral spokesper­son Gre­gory Seleke said the cen­tre would be aimed at as­sist­ing the youth and en­sur­ing that com­mu­nity mem­bers had in­for­ma­tion at the tip of their fin­gers.

“It will be the first of its kind in the area, its sole and main in­ten­tion is to bridge the gap of trav­el­ling for such ser­vices and to help res­i­dents to ac­cess in­ter­net at all times par­tic­u­larly young peo­ple,” he said.

PIC­TURE: PIXABAY

NO LIGHTS: Ritchie li­brary.

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