Thursday, September 1, 2022

LIAZ announces its annual general conference

 The Library and Information Association of Zambia (LIAZ) is set to hold its Annual General Conference (AGC) in the tourist capital city, Livingstone from the 6th to the 9th of September 2022 at the Chrismar Hotel.

The Conference will be graced by the Honourable Minister of Education, Honourable Douglas Siakalima.

As part of the conference, LIAZ will also hold its inaugural Awards and Gala Dinner at Avani Hotel to be attended by all conference delegates. 

Some limited AGC attendance scholarships are available for those who may be eligible to participate in the scholarship competition. 

Interested exhibitors should contact the LIAZ secretariat for more information 

For personalized invitations, reach out to LIAZ on WhatsApp number 0979805780 or email

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Establish library services in all schools, Syakalima urges PEOs in Zambia

Hon. Douglas M. Syakalima
Minister of Education, Zambia
Speaking when he officially launched the commemorations of the National Library Week under the theme, “connect with your library”, Minister of Education, Hon. Douglas M. Syakalima has urged Provincial Education Officers (PEO) to ensure that library services exist in all schools and ensure that professionally trained librarians are employed to manage the school libraries. 

The Minister said that the ministry is also desirous to see to it that a National Library which will have a Bibliographic Control Service is established and that a National Library and the Bill and Policy are actualised.

He noted that libraries play a fundamental role in the development of society as the utility of libraries goes far beyond its basic function as the custodian of information but has a significant role to play in educating citizens.

“Libraries are at the heart of our cities, towns, schools and campuses, providing critical resources, programs and expertise that add value to the communities,” Mr Syakalima said.

The minister added that a library is an equalizer among citizens of different statuses in a community, school or nation at large. He said that the haves and have-nots all find solace in a library to share the resources available as such he notes that a library is a promoter of equity in the communities, we live in. He observed that when a community is well informed, it results in development that in turn will aggregate into national development.

To enhance literacy levels, Mr Syakalima said that the ministry has promoted the establishment of classroom libraries amongst early graders, given out a number of books as well as trained various teacher librarians, provincial and district educationists, in the establishment and management of the classroom and school libraries.

The ministry is also working with the Ministry of Home Affairs in establishing libraries in all correctional facilities countrywide. This will provide an opportunity for inmates to study and sit for examinations and read for leisure as they serve their sentences.

The Minister lauded all the partners that have been supporting the agenda of libraries in the country such as the Library and Information Association of Zambia (LIAZ), UNICEF, Book Aid International, Beit Trust, Lubuto Library Partners and among others.

“As we celebrate library week, let us reflect on how best we can support the library service as communities connecting with our libraries. for the library to function to the desired capacity, it calls for concerted efforts from all stakeholders” he emphasised. 

Zambia celebrated the National Library Week Commemorations 2022 from 13 – 17 June 2022 in selected designated locations around the country while the official launch took place at Civic Centre, Kabwe, Central Province.

Zambia Commemorates 2022 National Library Week

Ministry of Education Permanent Secretary calls for digitalization of libraries in Zambia

By Bedson Nyoni

Library Week celebrartion in Zambia
Ministry of Education Permanent Secretary Zambia Commemorates 2022 National
Library Week  has called for the digitalization of libraries across the country.

In a speech read on his behalf by National Director for Primary Schools, Mr. Keziah Mwale at the official launch of the 2022 National Library Week held at Civic Centre in Kabwe, from 13 - 17 June 2022, Mr. Kamoko said there was a need for libraries to be connected to advanced technologies to make them accessible to everyone.

“Libraries are places to get connected to technology by using broadband, computers, and other resources. This year’s theme is an explicit call to action, an invitation for communities to join, visit or advocate for local libraries,” he said.

Mr. Kamoko noted that the 2022 National Library Week theme demonstrates how modern libraries were at the heart of institutions providing critical resources and expertise that add value to our communities.

This year’s National Library Week commemorations across the country are being held on the theme: “Connect with your library”.

Mr. Kamoko also called on stakeholders to continue supporting the ministry in the provision of libraries and library services at all levels.

He revealed that the Government in partnership with Book Aid International has taken a deliberate stance to establish 72 study hubs in the Copperbelt, Northern, Southern, Lusaka, North-western, Western and Muchinga provinces to provide additional support to learners preparing for examinations.

And Kabwe District Administrator, Mr. Lennox Shimwamba, commended all institutions that participated in the National Library Week Commemoration. 

Speaking at the same event, Mr. Simwamba observed that the commemoration was critical as its activities feed-in and work hand in hand with what the government is trying to achieve which is free education for all.

Meanwhile, Kabwe Mayor Patrick Chishala said that this year’s national library week espouses the view that libraries are living organisms that interacts with their external environment. 

He noted that the theme was a clear alignment with the Seventh National Development Plan (NDP) towards achieving ‘education for all by 2030’. 

And Provincial Education Officer for Central Province, Mrs. Maambe Hamududu said the importance of a library cannot be overemphasized. 

She cited the five most important reasons why libraries are needed: “libraries maintain the history and more important truth, libraries offer free educational resources, libraries help to build communities, libraries are transparent with the services they provide, and libraries contribute to increasing the economy”. 

LIAZ President
 Mrs Mutinta Mweemba Nabuyanda

Meanwhile, Library and Information Association President (LIAZ) President, Mrs Mutinta Mweemba Nabuyanda said connecting with our libraries is the only way through which we can benefit from the services and information resources contained therein. 

“The important role that libraries and librarians play in ensuring that our learners and citizens receive the right services and information to enhance their learning opportunities cannot be overemphasised. The best all of us can do, government inclusive therefore is to support libraries and the librarians with all relevant resources pertaining to their welfare" she stressed.

She said it was LIAZ's considered view that if qualified people are given the mandate to manage information in various Government departments, there would be a reduction in the leaking of sensitive information to unintended recipients. 

“The new technological environment in libraries and resource centres demands digital skills from key staff to play an effective role in providing digital information to the users, by possessing knowledge and skills to utilize e-resources, offer web-based services and market them digitally” she emphasised. 

The LIAZ president said that the Association has been carrying out periodic skills audits to establish gaps among LIS professionals and undertake training to mitigate identified gaps.


Tuesday, May 31, 2022

LIAZ training on digital marketing attracts over sixty information professionals

 By Bedson Nyoni; Photo by Mubanga Lumpa

Participants at the training workshop
The Library and Information Association of Zambia (LIAZ) conducted a Capacity
 Development training on Digital Marketing held in Siavonga from 4th – 8th April 2022. 

The training attracted over sixty librarians, records, archivists, and all information allied professionals drawn from different institutions ranging from public/special libraries to financial organizations.

The training objectives were among others to equip the trainees to leverage the power of digital tools to the market library and information services online; learn the fundamentals of digital marketing and content creation; Make use of relevant social media tools and techniques to help libraries and resource centres increase engagement online; understand the role of both digital and traditional media in marketing and the intersection of online and offline strategies and tactics. 

Speaking when she officially opened the training, the LIAZ president, Mrs Mutinta Nabuyanda noted that Digital technologies have brought about a paradigm shift in the way information is distributed and consumed. 

“The new technological environment in libraries and resource centres demands digital skills from key staff to play an effective role in providing digital information to the users, by possessing knowledge and skills to utilize e-resources, offer web-based services and market them digitally” she emphasised. 

The LIAZ president said that the association executive has been carrying out periodic skills audit to establish gaps among LIS professionals. She added that one such gap identified was in Digital Marketing which created the ground for the training conducted.

Mrs Nabuyanda noted that the training was crucial especially since it was after the COVID-19 pandemic which created challenges for most of the institutions that were more dependent on physical service provision. 

“I wish to remind you that your organization has supported you to attend this training and expect positive change in the execution of your duties. Therefore, I urge all of you to take this training seriously and prove your worth in your organizations” Mrs Nabuyanda emphasized.

The Digital Marketing training was done through modules that were delivered through lectures complemented with tutorials and practical lab sessions. The tutorials and lab sessions enabled and exposed learners to various eMarketing campaigns and time was given for extensive debate and evaluation of the merits of each campaign.

Further, the computer-based demonstrations in labs enabled participants to apply the knowledge gained in lectures. To ensure that learners understood the lessons, directed exercises and assignments were allocated at regular intervals for completion in the labs and also outside of class.

Speaking at end of the four-day training sessions, LIAZ Vice president, Mubanga Lumpa observed that in the 21st-century libraries, resource centres, librarians and information professionals are expected to thrive in the digital environment where they will be actively involved in the acquisition, application, use and implementation of new technologies in their organizations with their new skills and competencies to fit with their changing roles.

He urged participants to utilise the newly acquired skills for the betterment and improvement of their workplaces. “I wish to encourage you to make use of the networks you got in this training to help you grow professionally” he added. 

And Kitwe based Zambia Revenue Authority Registry Supervisor, Mr Phillip Banda applauded LIAZ for organizing the training. 

“We have learnt a lot and will now go back to our workplaces and be able to apply methodologies, tools and technologies involved in digital marketing” he added.

After the training, participants were among others expected to explain the role and importance of digital marketing in a rapidly changing business landscape, discuss the key elements of a digital marketing strategy, illustrate how the effectiveness of a digital marketing campaign can be measured and demonstrate advanced practical skills in common digital marketing tools such as Canvas, Typo, social media, and Blogs.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

LIASA announces joint LIASA-SCECSAL conference 2022

The Library and Information Association of South Africa (LIASA) has announced the LIASA-SCECSAL Conference 2022 on the theme "Against all odds: Resilience of libraries in a post-truth world", to be held from 4 to 7 October 2022, at the Radisson Hotel and Convention Centre, O.R. Tambo in Johannesburg.

Library and information services (LIS) professionals from the African region and beyond will meet to discuss and reflect on the challenges that libraries have had to overcome since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 and the successes achieved.  

The joint, hybrid conference, is a result of the SCECSAL Council's decision and proposal to LIASA to consider organizing the 2022 LIASA conference jointly with the 25th SCECSAL conference to ensure a return to the normal SCECSAL conference calendar which was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pandemic forced the National Information Workers Association of Namibia (NIWAN) to postpone the hosting of the 24th SCECSAL conference from April 2020 to February 2021, and this impacted the arrangements for the SCECSAL conference which was initially planned for April 2022. 

The SCECSAL Council, at its meeting held in April 2018 in Entebbe, Uganda, awarded LIASA the right to host the 25th SCECSAL conference. The Kenya Library Association will host the 26th SCECSAL conference in 2024.

For more information, including the call for papers, registration fees, etc, visit the conference webpage

Friday, November 5, 2021

NIWAN thanks Honourable, Professor Peter Katjavivi for his support

By Justin Chisenga and Chiku Mnubi-Mchombu; Photos by Rafael Hangula

Hon. Prof. Katjavivi
The 24th SCECSAL Conference National Organising Committee, led by the National Information Workers Association of Namibia (NIWAN) Chairperson, Ms. Namutenya Hamwaalwa, has thanked the Honourable, Professor Peter Katjavivi, Speaker of the National Assembly of Namibia, for his continued support to NIWAN during the difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic and when the Association was organizing and hosted the 24th SCESCSAL conference on 8-11 February.

The delegation to the Speaker’s Office, which included Dr. Chiku Mnubi-Mchombu, Mr. Wilhelm Uutoni, Ms. Ritva Niskala, and Ms. Hilya Robert, also presented ten copies of the book containing the papers delivered at the SCECSAL conference in February to the Speaker during a courtesy call on 28 October.

Professor Katjavivi was the Guest of Honour and Keynote Speaker at the opening session of the 24th SCECSAL Conference on Inclusive Libraries and Information Services Towards Achieving Prosperity for Sustainable Development in Africa, on 8 February in Windhoek, Namibia

Hon. Prof. Katjavivi with
the NIWAN delegation
During the visit, the Speaker extended his thanks to the team for hosting a wonderful and successful SCECSAL conference, emphasized the importance of access to information, and the need for NIWAN to work closely with his Office to establish a museum at the National Parliament. 

Honourable, Professor Katjavivi also took the opportunity to brief the delegation on some issues the Namibia Parliament is addressing including good Governance, information and communication technology (ICT), and staffing based on the “Agenda for Change Concept” which the Parliament is implementing.

The 24th SCECSAL Conference book contains 37 papers covering 11 sub-themes by authors from Botswana, Eswatini, Ghana, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, United States of America, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia. and Zimbabwe.

The individual papers and the book are available for download in PDF format on the SCECSAL website

Friday, September 3, 2021

Malawi Library Association mourns passing on of Mr Geoffrey Salanje

It is shock and grief again for the SCECSAL Fraternity after the passing on of Mr. Geoffrey Francis Salanje from Malawi. Mr Salanje worked for University of Malawi as a Librarian and later transferred to work as College Librarian for Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources formerly Bunda College of Agriculture where he has been serving as the University Librarian. 

Mr Salanje was a the President of the Malawi Library Association from 2005 to 2008 and Publications Officer in the current MALA Executive as well as current National Coordinator for EIFL in Malawi. He was also a key member of the SCECSAL Organizing Committee which was held in Lilongwe in 2014. Mr. Salanje passed away suddenly after a pneumonia attack on 27th August and was laid to rest on Sunday 29th August 2021 in his home village. He will be greatly missed by the LIS fraternity all over Africa and beyond. 

May His Soul Rest in Perfect Eternal Peace. 

The late Geoffrey Francis Salanje
22nd April 1961-27th August 2021

Monday, August 2, 2021

Call for papers - First National Research Dissemination Conference on Library and Information Science, Malawi

The Malawi Library Association and Mzuzu University’s Department of Information Science have issued a call for papers to be presented at the First National Research Dissemination Conference on Library and Information Science to be held on 28-29 October 2021 at Sunbird Nkopola Lodge in Malawi. 

The theme of the conference is “The Role of Libraries and Information Centres in the implementation of the Access to Information Act”.

For more information including updates on the conference, including sub-themes, registration, and accommodation, visit the Malawi Library Association website.

Friday, May 21, 2021

In memory of Prof. Isaac Kikongo-Bukenya

 by Justin Chisenga

Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya receiving the
SCECSAL Excellence Award, April 2018
Yesterday, Professor Isaac N. M. Kigongo-Bukenya, the last of the Three SCECSAL Musketeers, passed on.

I first met Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya during the SCANUL-ECS Conference on the theme – “Survival in a Changing Environment” held at Moi University in Eldoret, Kenya, 23-26 July 1998.  This was a pre-conference to the XIIIth SCECSAL Conference hosted by the Kenya Library Association, in Nairobi, 27 - 31 July. I travelled to Eldoret to seek support for the Namibian Information Workers Association (NIWA) to host the SCECSAL conference in 2000. 

Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya, together with the late Mr Jafred Shalimba Musisi (Kenya) and late Prof Maurice Chinfwembe Lundu (Zambia), encouraged me to get involved in SCECSAL and asked me to review and draft amendments to the SCECSAL constitution to be adopted at the XIVth SCECSAL conference in 2000, in Windhoek, Namibia. This was not going to be an easy task for me considering that I had no contacts or knew that many people in the SCECSAL member Library Associations. 

The three senior library and information science (LIS) professionals were good friends, and later I would always find them together at SCECSAL conferences. In my early years working on SCECSAL, I needed their support and help to move SCECSAL business forward and navigate the SCECSAL politics. Whenever I had challenges to address or a SCECSAL member Library Association was making life difficult for me, I would call upon them for help and guidance, and they would always come to my aid.  Because of this, I nick-named them – The Three SCECSAL Musketeers.

Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya at SCECSAL 2016
in Swaziland during the Cultural Evening event
Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya was ever-present at SCECSAL conferences. He was
always available to help conference organizers in many ways. He reviewed abstracts for the papers, chaired sessions at many conferences, mentored upcoming LIS professionals and guided them to write and present papers at conferences, and he presented several papers. All these roles, in one way or another, contributed immensely to the growth of SCECSAL and the LIS profession in the region. 

My cherished memory of him is that of being a jovial person which made him stand out. He was also a very easy person to approach and get along with. No wonder organizers of many SCECSAL Conferences always asked him to serve as master of ceremony during SCECSAL functions and he always gave his best. 

I also recall in 2002, during the Cultural Evening at XVth SCECSAL Conference in Johannesburg, when leaders of delegations from SCECSAL member Library Associations were asked to introduce themselves.  He loudly and jokily indicated that he was leading the largest “airborne” delegation of participants at the conference. We had a good laugh. He was right. More library and information professionals from Uganda had flown in for the conference, than the number of participants from each country neighbouring or close to South Africa.  

Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya dedication and commitment to SCECSAL was unquestionable. Only a handful of the current senior LIS professionals in the SCECSAL countries can be said to be as dedicated as he was.

I am happy to note that the SCECSAL General Council, on 23 April 2018, recognized Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya and awarded him the SCECSAL Excellence Award for his outstanding contribution to SCECSAL.

May His Soul Rest In Peace!.

Video: Uganda Library and Information Association won the 2012 SCECSAL Cultural Evening Award and Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya celebrated with the members. 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Professor Isaac Kigongo-Bukenya passes on

Dear SCECSAL fraternity, it is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing on of Professor Isaac N.M. Kigongo-Bukenya. Professor Kigongo- Bukenya has been a pillar of LIS not only in Uganda and SCECSAL region but globally. Professor Kigongo-Bukenya will be fondly remembered for his immense support to SCECSAL since its formation in 1974. 

Prof. Kigongo-Bukenya had participated in 15 SCECSAL conferences and played key roles at the conferences including as a paper presenter, conference paper reviewer and key note speaker. Professor has also been a LIS trainer and mentor to many librarians in Uganda, East Africa, Africa and world over.

Professor Kigongo passed on today 20th May, at around 2:54pm. We shall immensely miss you Professor. 

May His Soul Rest in Perfect Eternal Peace. 

R.I.P: Prof. Isaac N.M. Kigongo-Bukenya

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

LIASA to host SCECSAL 2022 conference

The Library and Information Association of South Africa (LIASA) will host the 25th SCECSAL Conference from 25th to 29th April 2022. 

SCECSAL 2022 details will be available on LIASA’s SCECSAL 2022 conference web page and on the SCECSAL website.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

“The Conference was a huge success”, Egbukole tells SCECSAL Forum

Kingsley Nnamdi Egbukole presenting
a paper at the 24th SCECSAL conference
“The conference was a huge success. The organization was excellent, the Safari Court venue was serene with adequate conference facilities perfect for a conference of this magnitude”, said Kingsley Nanmdia Egbukole in his interview with the SCECSAL Forum. 

Egbukole, from Owerri, Nigeria, participated in the 24th SCECSAL Conference, from 8 to 11 February, in Windhoek, Namibia where he presented a paper titled "Serving the public: African academic libraries and outreach services", co-authored with Mr Gilbert Mushi from Tanzania.

“The timing of the paper presentations was adhered to and the breakfast and lunch were rich. The moderation of the presentations was well executed and there was enough time for questions and answers”, the international participant commented on the conference arrangements.

Egbukole also expressed satisfaction with the arrangements by the conference organisers in ensuring that participants at the in-person event followed the COVID-19 protocols put in place by the Government of Namibia, and commended the organizers for assisting international participants that needed COVID-19 tests before leaving Namibia, to get to the medical laboratory for the tests, and for transport arrangements to the airport.

The minor draw-back at the conference, Egbukole noted, was the absence of an inquiry desk at the front of the conference hall to welcome participants and give directions.

Away from the conference proceedings, he enjoyed the tour of the City of Windhoek, which he found to be neat, calm, beautiful and well planned. He visited the Namibian National Museum and would have loved the organisers to have included more interesting sites on the tour of the city.

Egbukole heads the University Research Commons at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. He previously headed the ICT Unit, the Readers Services Unit and the Research, Training and Statistics Unit. He holds a Master in Information Technology from the University of Pretoria (South Africa); a Master of Library Science from Imo State University (Nigeria) and a Master of Business Administration (Project Management) from the Federal University of Technology (Nigeria). 

Saturday, February 13, 2021

International participants at SCECSAL conference tour Windhoek

Since April 2000, the third day at each SCECSAL conference is reserved for tours and cultural evening events, and SCECSAL 2021 was no different as far as tours were concerned.

We share photos from the tour of Windhoek by some international on Wednesday, 10 February.

Preparing to start off on the tour

At the University of Nambia
Information & Learning Resource Centre

Visiting the UNAM Resource Centre

Visting Greenwell Matongo Community Centre

Greenwell Matongo Community Centre

At the Independence Memorial

Visiting a local market in Windhoek

Friday, February 12, 2021

Librarians in the SCECSAL region urged to engage in "politics" to get extra budgets for libraries

Honourable Veno Kauaria at
the 25th SCECSAL Conference
On Thursday, Honourable Veno Kauaria, Member of Parliament in Namibia, urged librarians in the SCECSAL region to play politics of reaching out and innovation to get extra funding for their libraries, while maintaining their neutrality. 

"With the current diminishing budgets every financial year, it is up to the librarians to became politicians", Hon. Kauaria told library and information professionals during the closing ceremony of the 25th SCECSAL Conference in Windhoek, Namibia.

Libraries are neutral institutions and librarians should continue to maintain their neutrality, while striving to get the extra budget for their institutions. 

Librarians should be involved in the politics of engagement, politics of communication, and politics of persuasion. This is politics of reaching out and to innovate, she said.

Library advocacy is political engagement, it is about persuasion, it is about communication, and about reaching out, Hon. Kauaria told the gathering.. 

Librarians should know how to advocate for more funds for their libraries, they need to select who to reach out to and should engage with people who will advance their cause. Advocating for libraries is now more important than before and is within easy reach of librarians.

Hon. Kauaria reminded conference participants that people who allocate budgets, some who live with librarians in the communities and meet and engage with them at churches, need to know what librarians are doing if they are to support libraries’ cause. 

Most politicians like to hear numbers and statistics, and librarians should include in their advocacy strategies, talking to politicians in their area in terms of the number of youth visiting the library, people using libraries, to generate interest in the politicians who will see this in terms of the number of potential voters.

Hon. Kuaria, before moving into politics, worked and gained her experience in the library profession. 

She holds a B.A. in Sociology and a Master of Science in Library and Information Science both from Long Island University, in the United States of America. Her work and professional experience in the library and information sector, before going into politics, including serving as Director American Information Centre in Windhoek, Namibia; Director of Namibia Library and Archives Service under the Ministry of Education, and Executive Director (Permanent Secretary) in the Department of Lifelong Learning.

Hon. Kauaria is a founder member of the Namibian Information Workers Association (now called National Information Workers Association of Namibia). She served as NIWAM Chairperson from 2015 to 2019 during which she played a critical role in NIWAN's bid to host the 25th SCECSAL Conference. She has also served on the Bill and Melinda Gates Public Libraries Committee, and as Chairperson of ESARBICA.

His Excellence Dr Elia G. Kaiyamo 
Namibia Ambassador to China 

Earlier on during the closing ceremony, His Excellence Dr Elia G. Kaiyamo, Namibia Ambassador to China and NIWAN Patron, congratulated library and information professionals in the SCECSAL region, and extended a big thank you to SCECSAL 2021 conference organizers, paper presenters, and participants for a very successful conference. Dr Kaiyamo also called upon librarians to lead by example by reading more and doing research and join in the fight against the COVID-19. He further urged librarians to a build good working relationship with governments, especially with government institutions concerned with libraries, to contribute to the development of the people.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

SCECSAL Conference ends on a good note

 By Sylvia Umana for SCECSAL Forum

Hon. Veno Kauaria (right) handing
a certificate of appreciation
The 24th SCECSAL conference came to an end this afternoon in Windhoek,
Namibia. Today, the last day of the conference, proved to be another successful day. The day’s events were concluded with the SCECSAL General Assembly session during which key decisions from the SCECSAL General Council meeting and highlights of key issues from the conference were presented, and announcement and promotion for the twenty-fifth SCECSAL conference to be held in South Africa were made.

The SCECSAL Secretariat, represented by Dr Justin Chisenga, presented three key decisions from the SCECSAL General Council meeting held on Tuesday, 9 February 2021. These are: all future SCECSAL proceedings will be made available in digital format (print-on-demand); future SCECSAL conferences will largely be hybrid events, i.e. providing in-person and virtual options, except in cases where in-person will not be possible; and SCECSAL Excellence Awards for 2020 will be given to the recipients this year, at a special virtual event.

Ms Foibe Shaambeni presenting
a summary report on the conference

The Secretary of the XXIVth SCECSAL National Organising Committee and Chief Rapporteur for the Conference, Ms Foibe Shaambeni, presented a summary report highlighting several aspects of the conference. Among others, she reported that 46 presentations were made at the conference,  including 15 onsite, 27 via Zoom meeting platform and 4 as pre-recorded video presentations.

Ms Nikki Crowster, President of the Library and Information Association of South Africa (LIASA), confirmed her Association’s readiness to host the XXVth SCECSAL Conference from 25-29 April 2022. Ms Crowster told the Assembly that the conference is being planned largely as a virtual event on theme “Libraries and Information Services: Reflections and Predictions in Unprecedented Times” with sub-themes focusing on Creativity and innovation, Partnerships, Reflections (Impact e.g. fake news; focus on open access; changing buying patterns and material formats) and  Predictions (How services are redefined; planning; business continuity; etc). The call for the 2022 SCECSAL would be issued soon.  A video promoting the conference was played, following which many participants showered eagerness to participate in the 2022 conference. 

Social distanced participants
at the General Assembly
The SCECSAL Secretariat submitted to the Assembly, for adoption, two resolutions
calling upon SCECSAL member Associations i) to advocate for the ratification and domestication of the Marrakesh Treaty in their respective countries, and ii) to innovate and adopt the use of digital technologies to respond to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on provision and access to library and information services. The SCECSAL member Associations present at the Assembly endorsed the resolutions for adoption.

The day’s programme ended with members of the Local Organizing Committee being awarded certificates of appreciation for their hard work and a successful conference, and the international delegates awarded tokens of appreciation for gracing the conference with their presence in these trying times. 

Honourable Veno Kauaria, Member of Parliament and former NIWAN chairperson, delivered the closing statement in which she emphasised the importance of networking with politicians and library and information users, to raise awareness and advocate for library services.