BusinessDay

FTAN to re-engage government on tourism development

… launches Let’s Do It Together For Tourism hashtag

Nkereuwem Onung, national president, Federation of Tourism Association of Nigeria (FTAN), has assured of the federation’s commitment to continuously engage with government at all levels to give tourism a practical voice in Nigeria.

Onung, who disclosed this during his New Year message to Nigerians, said the organised private sector would continue to devise new ways to see that tourism collaborations among all the major stakeholders are refocused toward making the industry more vibrant.

Recounting the experiences in 2021, the FTAN president noted that, “Last year, the new normal had begun to kick in, tourism events sprang up everywhere. In the months of November and December 2021, we had events back to back. Akwaaba African Travel Market, Tourism and Transport Summit, awards, NAFEST, Associations AGMs etc. took place. However, as the industry anticipated a robust Christmas season for travellers, we witnessed apprehension caused by the Omicron variant of COVID-19 pandemic. Europe accused Africa and shut down air travel into their countries and apprehension replaces anticipation. Those who travelled had several complications; some events were cancelled, among them are Carnival Calabar and Greater Lagos.”

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“In this New Year 2022, we don’t know what the Federal Government intends to do differently to make tourism grow but we will attempt again to engage them. The states can do better. Private institutions of tourism can help. Stakeholders need unity and courage backed up by collaboration to run a people-oriented and viable tourism industry so as to sustain and benefit all and sundry. All these are what we are going to reinforce through our Let’s Do It Together hashtag, which we intend to launch this month.

“After the launch of #let’sdoittogetherfortourism, we will do a formal presentation to the public and private sector to show that we want a new narrative. The presentation will start with President Muhammad Buhari, the Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, state governors, director generals of tourism agencies and commissioners, the National Assembly and serious stakeholders. The hashtag will become a national emblem and promotional material for every event that is taking place in Nigeria. That is going to be our first statement to kick-start the 2022 practical tourism commitment and agenda of the federation.”

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