The Kenya National Library Service (KNLS) has officially launched Kenya’s first virtual library “VTabu”.
The $1.7m startup was released at Maktaba Kuu in Nairobi by Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Youth Affairs, Sports and Arts, Ababu Namwamba. VTabu contains over 200,000 reading materials including digitized books, periodicals, research papers, and government publications.
E-books for every subject covered in Pre-School, Primary, Junior and High School, as well as Tertiary and University levels, are also available on Vtabu.
Moreover, the (KNLS) has permitted government agencies and organizations to use VTabu as a data center for cloud storage services and digitization of important records, images, and maps.
“We no longer have to worry about the age of these publications, and we no longer have to worry about the fact that we only have one copy surviving. We no longer have to worry about very precious maps because they are in this space where they are safe and available to access,” said CS Ababu Namwamba.
“Access to information is key to enabling citizens to participate in governance and legal action. Give in mind; libraries are considered a powerhouse and a strategic resource.” (KNLS) Board Chairperson Robert Theuri Maina added.
Users can access VTabu for Ksh20 daily, Ksh100 weekly, Ksh500 monthly, Ksh1,500 bi-annually and 2,500 annually.
Furthermore, CS Ababu Namwamba declared 12th July an annual national reading day in accordance to President William Ruto’s speech.