Statement of Candidacy: Ellen Ndeshi Namhila (Namibia)
For the position of Governing Board Member 2015-2017
The exposure gained while serving as a Governing Board member for the term 2013-2015 provided me with insight and knowledge of the workings of IFLA as a global voice for libraries. If r*e-elected for 2015-2017, I pledge to actively promote the principles and goals of IFLA as contained in its Key Initiatives and the Lyon Declaration on Access to Information and Development, as well as the special concerns of libraries in developing nations.
Participation in IFLA activities has played a major role in my career and in various leadership portfolios I have held. As a chairperson of the Namibia Information Workers Association (NIWA), I played a pivotal role in the formulation of the Library Policy and Act for Namibia. Under my chairmanship, NIWA mobilized funds and successfully hosted the Standing Conference of Eastern, Central and Southern Africa Librarian (SCECSAL) in 2000 at which, for the first time, the IFLA Secretary General attended. As librarian of Parliament, I hosted the meeting of the Association of Parliamentary Libraries in Eastern and Southern Africa (APLESA) in 1998.
While serving as Director Namibia Library and Archives Service, I initiated the library strategic programme and lobbied for its inclusion in National Development Programmes, through which libraries in Namibia, up to today, have secured funding for infrastructure, ICT, skills development and inclusive access to library services at all levels. I organized and hosted the IFLA-PAC Africa regional workshop in 2005; the IFLA Africa Section mid-term meeting in 2006; the IFLA reading promotion workshop in 2007; and a library symposium carrying the theme of the IFLA President “Strong Libraries, Strong Societies” in 2013.
If elected, I pledge to continue advocating for the implementation of IFLA’s Key Initiatives, including post-2015 Millennium Development Goals at regional and international decision-making forums, including UNESCO, so that libraries are increasingly recognized as critical partners in national development plans and strategies.
Ellen Ndeshi Namhila
University of Namibia