Nigeria’s tourism industry is a `gold mine’, says Kanayo

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SundiataPOST, Abuja

  star, Kanayo Kanayo in Abuja on described Nigeria’s tourism industry as a `gold mine’ which should be tapped to boost nation’s .

Kanayo said during his familiarisation tour of Nigerian Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR) industry was one of non-oil sectors which present administration was focusing attention on.

The actor, who was recently appointed as the board chairman of NIHOTOUR, said the institution needed to evolve programmes would really educate Nigerians on the importance of tourism.

Commending the -General of the institute, Alhaji Munzali Dantata, Kanayo a good working relationship to achieve the institute’s core mandates.

“From what I have seen on ground,  shows Nigeria is workable. we only need to give directions and we can achieve a lot with several departments of the institute.

“We can put a lot of programmes in place that help to drive the of Nigeria. President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration is redirecting its attention to the non-oil sector.

“And this is a place we have to key in as part of the transformation agenda to ensure that the tourism sector becomes that gold mine we tap from like other countries to boost our ,’’ Kanayo said.

He said the institute had a lot could offer Nigerians and non-Nigerians in the areas of training and manpower development.

“As a regulatory agency to the hospitality and tourism sector, is a huge task and I am willing and committed to my experience to bear in the development of the sector.

“We want to de-emphasise this idea of I have my holidays in Dubai or other countries and make Nigerians interested in enjoying holidays within the country.

Kanayo to his to ensure that the bill establishing the institute was passed into law.

Earlier, Dantata said that the institute’s mandate was to ensure that training offered at all levels and cadres were streamlined, focused and properly coordinated.

“The institute is charged to provide training and grow manpower for not only Nigeria’s hospitality and tourism industry, but also for the entire West Africa region,’’ he said.

“NIHOTOUR is now moving on to becoming more of a regulatory agency for the training of industry sector manpower.

“The institute has a policy to have a training school in each of the six geopolitical zones in the country.

“We have achieved that with the current six training schools in operation,’’ the -general said.

Dantata said that the institute was also to get the private sector and state governments involved in setting up training institutions for tourism and hospitality students and prospective practitioners.