In a surprising move, the administration of the University of the Red Sea in eastern Sudan closed the doors of a huge library inside the university, under the pretext of displaying books that contradict the interests of students and corrupt their morals.
Close under false pretenses
In a comment to Al-Arabiya.net, the novelist and storyteller Muhannad Al-Dabi, who holds the position of Director General of the Cultural Foundation responsible for the library, accused some university administration officials of monitoring the library, until it closed it under flimsy pretexts, and was surprised by the indication that the library includes books that are not in the interest of students. And their morals deteriorate, commenting with bitter sarcasm: “This rare discovery was made a full year after the opening of the library!”
An acclaimed opening ceremony
Muhannad Al-Dabi told Al-Arabiya.net the details of the library’s establishment by saying: “The university offered them the aforementioned site, while they were searching for a place to set up a public library in Port Sudan, and we approved and received the proposed site in an official manner, and the opening ceremony took place with a well-known celebration in January last year.” .
Muhannad states that the library contained more than a thousand titles of various knowledge and human sciences, and was distinguished by the diversity and richness of practical and literary references and rare Sudanese and international literature, in both Arabic and English. It also turned into a creative outlet for students who are amateurs of music and various forms of art and creativity.
A vow of confrontation
Muhannad goes on to say: “After a full year has passed, we received a letter from the university administration stating that the Libraries Deanship was surprised by the existence of a library that does not belong to them on campus.”
He added, “We replied that we have legal correspondence with the right to use the place for five years, and I personally contacted university officials, who assured me that the dean of libraries is not satisfied with the existence of the library, because it contains books that corrupt morals, as he put it!”
Muhannad sadly asked, “Why do they repeat these sayings after a whole year has passed?” He added with great sadness: “We have decided to close the library until we reach new understandings with the university administration, or to move to another place.”
Muhannad mourned the library with words full of sadness, anger and bitterness on his personal Facebook page, saying: “This wonderful and beautiful place, after tiring and toiling in choosing books that were in various fields of knowledge… We were keen to have it in the most youth-rich area in the city of Port Sudan – University of Sudan.” The Red Sea.. We submitted a request to the university administration, and it agreed to it and gave us the place under a contract.”
University sources are speaking
On the other hand, an academic source at the “Red Sea University” – who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the subject – told Al-Arabiya.net: 70% of the factors that led to the library’s closure are internal factors pertaining to the university itself, and it is not time to reveal them.
He only indicated that the parties aiming to liquidate the library took advantage of loopholes in the contractual formula between the university administration and the cultural institution.
However, the source told Al-Arabiya.net: Whatever the motives, the closure of a library, and the presence of professors who oppose the establishment of a library, is a very unfortunate issue that needs to be reviewed.
Misery and bankruptcy
And he continued to talk about the existence of corrupt literature with “misery and bankruptcy”, because this matter has become useless in light of the open space, as anyone, student or otherwise, can read whatever he wants whenever he wants.
The most dangerous thing is that the ruling on the corruption of this book, or its validity, or its inappropriateness for students, cannot be relied upon on the opinion of one person, as the matter requires relying on an institutional evaluation process, from people who are known for their knowledge and enlightenment, and he continued: “In my belief, this is what the university will do.” .