Ex-LRCN CEO blames governing board for limited performance in office

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Immediate-past National Librarian and Chief Executive Officer of Librarians’ Registration Council of Nigeria (LRCN), Professor Lenrie Aina, has blamed members of the agency’s governing board for the limited performance had while in office.

Nevertheless, he said that several achievements were recorded in areas of manpower development, readership promotion and several other areas within the mandate of the organization.

He said that virtually all the members of the governing board displayed one form of greed or another, and are after what they could get instead of the impact they could make in the organization.

He, thus suggested that the appointment into such positions should be reserved for people with proven integrity, influence and competence, and not to politicians who are after their selfish gains.

Aina, in an interactive session with journalists, in Abuja, last Friday, to mark the end of his tenure, said the set of members of the governing board were his major “headache”, as they were only after what they could gain instead of what they could contribute to the betterment of the Agency.

He recalled the unpleasant response he got from his colleagues at one of the quarterly meetings with the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, where he made request for constitution of governing board.

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He said, “Immediately I made the request, my colleagues laughed profusely and I was confused. It was after the appointment and inauguration of the board that I realized why they laughed that day.

“I was, maybe, unlucky with the set of people given to me. They frustrated my dreams and made the work tiring, contrary to my expectations. They were after money and personal enrichment even when it was contrary to the regulations which recommended a particular sitting allowance for board members, irrespective of number of days they sat but the case was different in my case.

“They demanded that I pay them for each day they sat instead of normal board scheduled meeting. When I refused, they drew the battleline, and refused to attend to my issues I presented at the meeting.

“I was once the President of Nigeria Library Association, and that automatically made me a board member of NLN some years ago. It wasn’t like this. We were after the cause of promoting library profession in Nigeria.”

“At our last board meeting, they demanded that I double their sitting allowance, when I refused, they protested and refused to consider issues presented at the meeting, in spite of the financial commitments and other logistics already made to bring to them meeting.”

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Aina, thus, suggested that government do something about the development, stating that many agencies are recording abysmally performance because of the frustrations from their board. But that doesn’t rule out the fact that governing board are doing pretty well and are helping their organizations to achieve the desired success.

“For instance, we have not recruited new staff since 2014, and 180 staff have exited the service without replacement. We are also expanding, establishing new offices across the country. When the opportunity to recruit new staff came after all the necessary approvals were secured, the board members refused and attempted to hijack the process. They demanded for slots before they could allow us recruit,” he added.

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