• Unveils Tourism Info Desk At Enugu Airport
Stories by Abel Orukpe,
As part of efforts to market Nigerian tourism potential, the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) has opened NTDC Tourism Information desk at Akanu Ibiam International Airport (AIIA), Enugu, one of Nigeria’s gateway and major airport.
The opening of the information desk at AIIA by NTDC makes the state one of the states that has tourism information desk, having opened information desks in Kano and Calabar.
Speaking at the opening of the NTDC’s tourism information desk in AIIA, Enugu, the Director General of NTDC, Mrs. Sally Uwechue Mbanefo, stated that tourism is the greatest employer of labour.
She said that tourism contributes about 9.3 per cent to the global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), adding that it contributes 17.7 percent to Gambia’s economy; Egypt, 13 percent; South Africa, 9 percent; Mexico, 11.9 percent; Kenya, 12 percent; Brazil, 7.8 percent; and Cuba, 6 percent, adding that tourism contributes 4 percent to Nigeria’s economy.
The Director General stressed that tourism development remains relevant and important in the economy building of any nation in the world.
She explained that the NTDC’s information desk was part of the corporation’s effort towards promoting domestic tourism.
She recalled that the corporation’s collaboration with Viko Group of Companies Limited had earlier commissioned four information desks at major airports in the country such as the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos, Nnamdi Azikwe Airport (NAA), Abuja, Mallam Aminu Kano Airport (MAKA) Kano, Margret Ekpo Airport, Calabar and now Enugu.
She further explained that Enugu State is one of the tourism friendly states and a major tourism hub in Nigeria
According to her, “Enugu State is a place to visit and a destination of choice for tourists of various inclinations. Enugu and Nsukka towns present tourism infrastructure for cultural, eco-tourism, sporting, business and conferences. The following facilities are prominent; The Nike lake Resort, Enugu Polo Amusement Parks, Enugu Zoological Garden, Nsukka Zoological Garden, Hotel Presidential, Ezeagu Tourist Complex, Dugudu Lakes and Ajali Owa sandy Stream among others.”
She continued, “Nigeria has been solely dependent on the oil sector for many years. Nigerians are not encouraged to visit the various attractions from North to South, East to West to experience what God Almighty has endowed Nigerians with and we want Nigerians to take their life styles seriously, knowing that one’s health depends on leisure, which is part of tourism, which is one of the things that promote longevity of life. Tourism is sustainable and a necessity in economic building and not a luxury.”
Mbanefo, however, called for more support from both private and government to promote domestic tourism activities in Nigeria so as to move away from total dependence on oil and create jobs for the teeming youth, alleviate poverty and reduce urban migration.
Addressing the top government officials and traditional rulers, the Chief Executive Officer of Viko Group of Companies, Mr. Lucky Kanu, stated that the tourism information desk features a travel information portal for tourists with information on the aviation industry, adding that real time flight information could be personalised with alarm sent to customers phones to remind them of their scheduled flight time
Kanu further stated that the portal was opened to provide information about tourist attractions in Nigeria that are not known to tourists.
In his words, “We are promoting domestic tourism in the country in order to increase revenue generation for the country, openings for job opportunities for our teeming unemployed youth.”
The Viko Group of Company Nigeria Limited boss expressed his willingness and determination to collaborate with the NTDC to create job opportunities and that the company would work on the existing partnership with NTDC to open more information desks in all major airports in Nigeria.
Passengers, she said, could browse for free and view tourists’ sites, tourists’ activities, products, hotels, car hire services, events and festivals, and could also make enquiries and book excursion trips to schools and holiday sightseeing within the country at no cost at all.
On his part, the manager of the Akanu Ibiam International airport, Enugu, Mr. Mgbemene Ijiako, stated that he was impressed by the synergy between NTDC and Viko Limited, which according to him, had resulted to the establishment of the NTDC information desk at Enugu Airport.
Source : Independent