By Jimoh Babatunde
PRESIDENT of the Institute of Tourism Professionals, ITP, Mr Abiodun Odusanwo, has called on the Federal Government to empower agencies handling the development of the tourism sector in the country to carry out their role in line with global best practices.
He said,“Government needs to strengthen these institutions, review their laws and ensure that the laws establishing them reflect current realities; an example is the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation. Also, the laws establishing the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR) as the engine room for manpower development for the industry needs to be adequate. This is because without enhanced capacity development, we cannot get the skills required for the industry; when we get this arrangement right, we will achieve much.”
The ITP president, who is also the second National President, Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN), said there was a need for positive connectivity between tourism and other associated economic activities. He said that transportation was instrumental to the development of tourism, and would facilitate movement from one tourist site to the other, adding, “There is a need to synergise the tourism ministry, aviation industry and mass transport. If these ministries or agencies are connected, we would have sustainable tourism development in the country.”
Similarly, Malam Aliyu Badaki, President, Hospitality and Tourism Association of Nigeria, said that the Federal Government needed to be committed to the development of tourism by providing an enabling environment.