Loveness Mpofu, Sunday News Reporter
THE Bulawayo City Council has offered a temporary building to house a community library in Entumbane suburb while efforts are being made to construct a permanent infrastructure as part of cultivating the spirit of reading among residents.
Addressing residents last week, Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association chairman Mr Lovemore Sibanda said arrangements have been made to refurbish the temporary structure so it can start operating as a library.
“The City Council has offered us Shop N0. 302/9 Entumbane to set up a temporary library. Arrangements to refurbish the room are in progress and a collection of books for the library is at an advanced stage,” he said.
In a statement, Bulawayo council acting Director of Housing and Community Services Mr Dictor Khumalo said the room however, does not have enough space for people to study.
“The makeshift library will not have enough room to study (within the library) therefore potential users will be expected to pay subscription fees and hence borrow books to read at home,” he said
BPRA secretary Mr Peter Sadza appealed to teachers, lecturers and students to help in the identification of suitable books that can be stocked in the library.
Meanwhile, residents in the suburb have blamed Councillor Gladys Masuku for allegedly hindering the development of the library. They alleged that the councillor was renting out the stand where the library must be built to former Councillor Prince Dube. Mr Dube is running a car park business at the library stand.
Mr Sadza said ever since they started requesting for a library, the councillor has not been part of the deliberations.
Contacted for comment, Clr Masuku said the stand was leased to Mr Dube by the council as part of trying to raise money.
“Those are lies, the former councillor is no longer part of our party. The library stand was leased to the former councillor by the City Council. I am working very hard to secure a library for Entumbane, those are people who just want to tarnish my image,” she said.