After being closed for almost a year, the adult section of the Vieux Fort Public library is still not available for use, and there is no sign of it being reopened soon.
The adult section, which has been closed since last August, is riddled with a multitude of problems which include mould infestation, cracked walls, poor ventilation, a leaky roof, electrical issues and broken tiles. Whenever it rains heavily, that particular section of the building is transformed into a shallow swimming pool.
Last year, the Labour Department ordered the Ministry of Education to close the section, located on the upper floor of the maintenance department of the Vieux Fort South Constituency Council. It described the upper floor of the building as a health hazard, and one that required immediate attention.
A fleeting glance at the building’s exterior would give one the impression that it is in good condition, but a peek inside tells a different story.
The Ministry of Education is aware of the still existing problems at the library, but according to a source there, it is not in any hurry to address the myriad of problems plaguing the Vieux Fort Public library.
The situation has resulted in adults being forced to occupy the children’s section of the library under cramped conditions. The children’s section is located on the ground floor of the building.
Since its closure, nothing has been done to address its problems which are of grave concern to the librarians working there and residents of Vieux Fort, especially students of secondary schools.
Sometime last year there was a plan to relocate the library, but it appears that the plan has been shelved.
“What’s going on? Will we ever get a chance to use the library again?” Kursley Joseph, a longtime library patron asked.
But not even the Director of Library Services, Cynthia Mc Farlane has any inkling when the library will be reopened.
While residents wait, day by day they are growing even more convinced that the needs of their community are simply not a top priority.