The National Institute of Studies and Research, the National Library of Guinea-Bissau, and the Guinean Association of Documentalists, Archivists, and Librarians were presented with new digital equipment to preserve the country's history. The high-tech digital equipment was provided within the scope of the project to preserve national memory for sustainable peace in Guinea-Bissau, which has the technical and financial support of the UNDP, through the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund.
"With this equipment, we are committed to creating a digital library for the State of Guinea-Bissau," said Iaguba Djaló, Coordinator of the Public Library Services and President of Guinean Association of Documentalists, Archivist and Librarians.
In the political-military conflict, which took place in Guinea-Bissau between June 1998 and April 1999, much of the documentary collection and historical archives of various public institutions were destroyed.
"The recovery of this memory has to be accompanied by new technology and this equipment will fill that gap," he said.
According to Iaguba Djaló, the new equipment will make it possible to digitize 120,000 documents, 3,000 photographic images, 8,000 negative films and 4,000 microfilms.
"It is hard work and difficult to limit in time because it depends on two aspects," said the director-general of the National Library of Guinea-Bissau. Iaguba Djaló said that it depends on the existence of "well-trained and well-motivated" human resources personnel and financial and transport resources to achieve these outcomes.
"Another aspect is the preservation of documents because we live in a tropical country with excessive temperature and humidity that are harmful to organic matter," he said.
In this sense, Iaguna Djaló suggests a rehabilitation of the building so that conditions are created to preserve the documents is necessary.
"As long as there is political will, the mission will be accomplished," he said, referring to the presence of several members of the Government at the presentation ceremony of the new equipment.