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Okay na yung scholar! Ambeth Ocampo backs Duterte’s choice of non-librarian for Nat’l Library chief

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Historian Ambeth Ocampo sees nothing wrong with the appointment of Cesar Gilbert Adriano as director of the National Library of the Philippines even though he is not a licensed librarian.

Ocampo, a history professor at the Ateneo de Manila University, noted in his February 2 column for the Philippine Daily Inquirer that only four out of 2
NLP’s 23 directors since its creation in 1910 were librarians.

The rest, he said, were scholars such as Epifanio de los Santos, Teodoro M. Kalaw and Carlos Quirino.

Based on the backgrounds of majority of NLP’s former directors, Ocampo said: “We need more than a professional librarian as NLP director. We need a distinguished librarian, an administrator, or a scholar to head this cultural agency.”

Ocampo’s comment comes amid the controversy surrounding Adriano’s appointment.

Vernon Totanes, a licensed librarian who heads ADMU’s Rizal Library, asked the Ombudsman to investigate Adriano’s appointment due to his lack of qualifications for the job.

Citing Section 26 of the Philippine Librarianship Act of 2003, Totanes argued that: “A person who does not have a valid Certificate of Registration and Professional Identification Card or a temporary/special permit from the Commission shall not practice or offer to practice librarianship in the Philippines or assume any position, which involve performing the function of a librarian…”

He also cited Section 31 of Employment of Librarians that states: “Only qualified and licensed librarians shall be employed as librarians in all government libraries.”