Disaster and Security Management in Public Archival Institutions in ESARBICA Region

  • Patrick Ngulube Information Studies Programme, School of Human and Social Studies, University of KwaZulu-Natal, P/Bag X01 Scottsville, Pietermaritzburg 3209, South Africa


When archivists accept holdings into their repositories, they are taking responsibility for the custody for these materials. All their efforts may come to naught if the archives are lost as a result of a disaster or breach in security. Security and disaster management are the key to the protection of archival materials from human and natural disasters. Unfortunately, far too many archives in the East and Southern Africa Regional Branch of the International Council on Archives (ESARBICA) member states have neither a disaster-preparedness nor a security plan in place. Many archivists in the ESARBICA region recognise the need to protect their holdings, but they fail to develop disaster-preparedness and security plans due to a number of factors including inadequate funding and staffing, and shortage of supplies. However, these problems should not prevent archivists from developing disaster-preparedness and security plans to protect their holdings. The process of developing disaster plans is very simple, although it is time consuming. Archivists do not need high tech and expensive equipment and supplies to develop sound plans.
Afr. J. Lib. Arch. & Inf. Sc. Vol.15(1) 2005: 15-23

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eISSN: 0795-4778