Following a PREMIUM TIMES report indicating that the Akwa Ibom state “e-library” commissioned by President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday had no functional website, the state government has in the last 24 hours unveiled three websites for the project.
The websites surfaced on Thursday morning after a three-day vigorous search on the Internet by this newspaper failed to yield any web platform for the library.
In what appears a face-saving move, the websites, http://akselibrary.org, http://ibomelibrary.org and http://akselib.org, were switched online prematurely, even as they are yet to be populated with contents necessary for a functioning e-library website.
PREMIUM TIMES gathered that the sites were offline as at the time our report was published. They were hurriedly switched online to challenge our story even though they were still under construction.
On its homepage, it has prominent carrousel containing three flash banners with pictures of the library and captions. One reads: “building leaders of tomorrow, Education is our priority in Akwa Ibom.” But the other two portrays the library as a secure place with a conducive environment to relax, offering “great hospitality.”
The carousel sits on a section primarily containing the state governor’s thumbnail image and a quote from his one year in office anniversary speech. And a “read more” link button.
To the right of the two column website is the registration section with a message informing visitors that they have to be registered to access the portal. It also provides the “read more” link button, apparently to take interested users to the registration page, and onwards to the archive, which is the most strategic function of an e-library.
However, both link buttons and the rest on the website’s homepage are not functional, leading only to blank pages.
The library’s objective, according to the website, is “to provide online physical and electronic educational material with support to the general public.”
But the “libraries” section of the website has only one page, listing the state’s functional libraries, without links to any digital archive available online, as the objective claims.
The website was first created on 21 September 2011, registered by one Nnamdi Wakwe of Lighthouse Multimedia in Isolo Lagos. It was last updated on 24 May 2012.
The ibomelibrary.org website is a children friendly website. It was created Friday last week, two days before the commissioning of the library.
It was last updated on Sunday 24 June 2012, apparently in a rush to present an interface to last through the commissioning.
The Ibomelibrary.org is registered to an anonymous user resident in Bellevue, a small city in the eastside region of King County, Washington, United states.
Like the former, it has loads of broken links, an indication that it was either abandoned after the commissioning or still under construction.
Although it appears more focused on providing an e-library service, unlike the former, the collections it claims to have are also unavailable on the server.
A third website, http://akselib.org, also exists. It is registered to an anonymous user in the United States too. Besides the “About” page, which has contents relating to Akwa Ibom state, the other materials on the site are foreign articles, pictures and links to similar library institutions abroad.
The website was first created on 7 October 2011 in Scottsdale, Arizona US. It was last updated 7 December 2011.