PERCEIVED EFFECT OF THEFT AND MUTILATION OF INFORMATION RESOURCES IN UNIVERSITY LIBRARIES IN BENUE STATE, NIGERIA
The study investigated the effect of theft and mutilation of information resources in university libraries in Benue State, Nigeria. The study was guided by four research questions. Descriptive survey research design was adopted for the study. Population of the study comprised three hundred (300) library users drawn from three universities in Benue State. The entire population was studied hence there was no sampling as the size was manageable. A structured questionnaire titled, "Questionnaire on Effect of Theft and Mutilation of Information Resources in Academic Libraries in Universities in Benue State (QETMIRALUBS)" was used for data collection. Data collected were analyzed using mean scores and standard deviation (SD). The study found that theft and mutilation of information resources exist in the university libraries studied. The finding also revealed among others that; theft and mutilation cause frustration to librarians and library users. It also makes materials less useful and causes shortage of library materials. Result of the analysis also revealed that all library materials in the three universities in Benue State were vulnerable to theft and mutilation except audio visual materials. All the factors listed in this study were responsible for theft and mutilation except the high demand of a particular book by users. The study also found out that some of the measures or strategies that could be used to combat theft and mutilation in these libraries include the provision of enough security, mounting of Close Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras in the libraries as well as, periodic searching of hostels and staff offices. Based on these findings, it was recommended that the university administration should endeavor to provide enough reading materials, photocopying facility, among others.