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2010 Press Releases

National Library of South Africa Signs with World Digital Library Project

November 16, 2010


PRETORIA – Recently, South Africa’s National Librarian, John Tsebe signed a partnership agreement with the World Digital Library Project (WDLP), witnessed by Country Public Affairs Officer Karl Stoltz and Regional Information Resource Officer Steven Kerchoff.  The World Digital Library (WDL), a joint project of the Library of Congress and UNESCO, makes available on the Internet, free of charge and in multilingual format, significant primary materials from countries and cultures around the world.

“Participation in the World Digital Library Project will galvanize our efforts to digitize valuable historical documents, some of which date back to the pre-colonial era,” explains Tsebe.  “This project will further enhance the library’s ability to fulfill its statutory mission of contributing to socio-economic, cultural, education, scientific, and innovation development as custodian of the national information heritage.  The library’s unique cultural artifacts will be available in digital format to the people of South Africa and to the entire world.”

The U.S. Embassy has enjoyed a fruitful partnership with the National Library.  In 2007, the Embassy sponsored Tsebe’s visit to the Library of Congress in Washington DC, where he established contacts with WDLP staff.  More recently, the Embassy presented the library with a special collection of 100 books by and about African Americans.  “We are delighted that the National Library of South Africa will be sharing its treasures through participation in the World Digital Library Project,” says Kerchoff “and we look forward to exploring further areas for cooperation with this prestigious institution.”

For more information: U.S. Embassy Pretoria
Elizabeth Kennedy Trudeau: 012-431-4217 |  079-111-8280 | trudeauek@state.gov