Library: MEC apologises to Bfn community

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The Free State MEC for the Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation, and now the Acting Premier, Mathabo Leeto, says they have raised an urgent concern with the Department of Public Works over the completion of renovations at the Bloemfontein Public Library.
The library was meant to be opened before the end of this month after its closure for renovations in 2013. The department had previously said that the library was in its final construction phase, however, months later it is not even near completion.
Leeto says they are attending to the problem and would like to extend their apology to the public for the delay. “With regard to the Bloemfontein Library the infrastructure projects are implemented by the Department of Public Works, but because it’s our budget as the Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation we have raised concerns with them. We want to apologise to our people in Bloemfontein. We are attending to that problem working together with Public Works.”
Leeto says there have been challenges with contractors during the construction of the different phases of the project. She says they have appoint a third company to complete the work.
The department had initially allocated R15 million for the renovations.
The Bloemfontein public library is one of four legal deposit libraries in South Africa, excluding the Library of Parliament, which means each book published in the country has to be available at the Bloemfontein Public Library as stipulated in the Legal Deposit Act. – Katleho Morapela

katleho@centralmediagroup.co.za