THE Polokwane library cannot cater for the hundreds of students who want to use the facility to prepare for their final examinations.
The small building cannot accommodate the huge number of pupils and students who want to use it.
Sowetan witnessed a near stampede yesterday when high school and university students pushed and shoved each other in a bid to be the first to enter the facility.
It was a matter of survival of the fittest as people struggled to get access.
Regular users of the library were forced to make way for the new arrivals who wanted reference materials ahead of the exams.
According to those we interviewed, this is apparently normal at this time of the year when full-time and part-time students are all preparing for their end-of-year exams.
The number of people using the library apparently swells at this time of the year because students from areas far away from Polokwane also want a last minute opportunity to use the facility.
Makwena Thantsha, a University of South Africa (Unisa) second year business administration student, said this situation was normal at the library at this time of the time.
"This library is too small for the number of learners who want to use it. It simply cannot accommodate the number of learners who turn up," she said.
"The municipality must build a bigger facility to avoid this kind of stampede."
Another Unisa student, Julia Mphela, said it was unfair of those who did not use the library frequently to fight for space with the library's regular users.
"A system must be put in place to regulate entrance to the library. We need a system to recognise those who use the library on a regular basis during the year because we end up getting inconvenienced as a result of the 'one timers' who disorganise us," Mphela said.
But municipal spokesperson Phuti Lekganyane played down the matter, saying it was "not a life-threatening situation".
"Queues are everywhere, be it in banks or governmental offices," he said.
He advised people to use other libraries at Unisa and the Tshwane University of Technology.
"We also have public libraries in Seshego, Mankweng and other areas within our municipality where people can go," he said.