Peter Penfold donates books to library board
Former British Ambassador to Sierra Leone, His Excellency Pa Komrabai Peter Penfold (in photo on the right) has donated copies of his books: ‘John Abu Goes to School’ – for primary schools and ‘Atrocities, Diamonds and Diplomacy; the inside story of the conflict in Sierra Leone,’ both in print and Braille for the public and blind readers, to the Sierra Leone Library Board at a ceremony held at the Library’s Conference room Rokel Street in Freetown.
Delivering his welcome address the Chief Librarian Mr. Sallieu Turay welcomed Chief Peter Penfold and his entourage and informed them that as a public library their historic mission is fostering literacy and learning. He reiterated the importance of information and knowledge which according to him is embedded in books and can change lives and critically play a role in determining the future of a society.
Mr. Salieu Turay expressed his delight for the Braille books as it will not only enhance their collection but will in turn help them to attract and properly serve individuals with disability. He informed the audience that they have expanded the library as they have developed an array of services, programs and collections tailored to the unique needs of the users.
In his remarks His Excellency Pa Komrabai Peter Penfold expressed his delight to be around once again, he gave a brief overview of his two books which according to him, the book John Abu goes to school is about a blind boy, a deaf girl and an amputee teacher who are heroes in the book which shows that the disabled too have meaningful roles to play in the development of the society. The book Atrocities, Diamonds and Diplomacy – The inside story of the conflict in Sierra Leone is about the war.
His Excellency Pa Komrabai Peter Penfold disclosed that the book covers the AFRC/RUF Coup of 1997 and its aftermath, including ECOMOGs Intervention and the role of the civil militia known as KAMAJORS. He expressed his profound thanks to his daughter who was instrumental in the book John Abu Goes to school and a blind friend Mrs. Jane Philips in London who was able to compile the book Atrocities, Diamonds and Diplomacy – The inside story in a Braille version in 6 volumes.
Peter Penfold expressed his hope that the book will remind those who witnessed the war, and also inform those who did not witness the atrocities, so that all will never ever think of going back to those old days.
Receiving the books on behalf of the Board of the Sierra Leone Library Mr. Solomon Fofanah, a Board member on behalf of the Chairman of the Board, thanked His Excellency Pa Komrabai Peter Penfold for his good initiative in presenting his books to the Sierra Leone Library Board and hopes others will follow in his footsteps by presenting their published books to the library.
By: Alhaji Mohamed Wusha Conteh
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