National Library of Benin
The National Library of Benin (French: Bibliothèque nationale du Bénin) is the legal deposit library for Benin. Originally chartered in November 1975 and located in Ouidah, the library moved to a purpose built unit in the Ouando neighbourhood of Porto-Novo during the 1980s.
Originally located in Ouidah, The National Library of Benin was established on 25 November 1975 following the approval of the decree n°75-305. The first director of the library was Noël Hontongnon Amoussou. A 1976 Unesco report on the early stages of development of the library underlined the limited budget, the lack of personnel training, and the lack of global planning. A new building was created during the 1980s in Porto-Novo, which was opened to the public in 1987. For many years the director of the National Library was Florence Ayivi Foliaon.
By 2014, the library did not have a fire emergency system in place, no internet network, and the place had not been visited by the country's Minister of culture for 20 years.
The purpose of the National library of Benin is to collect, organize, preserve, and make accessible the documentary patrimony of the country. The library is composed of three units. Since opening, it holds a collection of 10,000 ancient documents on Dahomey and Africa in general. 4 copies of all books produced in the country must be deposited at the National Library (3 for books printed less than 300 times). The French Institute in Benin donates 3-year-old magazines and newspapers to the library.
- Kent, Allen; Lancour, Harold; Daily, Jay E., eds. (1989). "The National Library of the Republic of Benin". Encyclopedia of library and information science (Volume 44 ed.). M. Dekker. pp. 26–27. ISBN 9780824720445.
- (in French) Kenneth H. Roberts, Rapport d'une mission financée par le programme régulier, Unesco.org, October 1976
- Mathurin C. Houngnikpo; Samuel Decalo (14 December 2012). Historical Dictionary of Benin. Scarecrow Press. pp. 19–. ISBN 978-0-8108-7373-5.
- (in French) Esckil Agbo, Une quarantaine d'années après sa création: La bibliothèque nationale du Bénin végète dans une décrépitude grandissante, Dekartcom.net, 25 October 2014
- Mandatory Deposit Laws, Loc.gov
- (in French) Léon Sogodo Djogbenou, De la presse sur support papier à la presse en ligne : tendances et évolution à la médiathèque de l’Institut français du Bénin, Ifla.org, 19 January 2016
- Official site (in French)