Capacity building key to Tourism sector growth – Minister

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L-R: Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State presenting the state’s traditional regalia to the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, during a courtesy visit by the Minister to the Government House, ahead of the official take-off of the North Central Zonal Office of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism in Makurdi on Monday.
L-R: Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State presenting the state’s traditional regalia to the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, during a courtesy visit by the Minister to the Government House, ahead of the official take-off of the North Central Zonal Office of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism in Makurdi on Monday.

THE minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed, has said
that capacity building for players in the tourism sector is key to the
development of the sector

The minister stated this in Makurdi, the Benue State capital on Monday at the
formal take-off of the North Central Zonal Headquarters of the
Nigerian Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, NIHOTOUR.

“Now, one of the prerequisites for tourism to develop and play its
desired role in the socio-economic life of a nation is availability of
well-trained personnel. This forms the basis for the Federal
Government’s decision to have a specialized training institution
for the hospitality and tourism industry in Nigeria, which culminated
in the establishment of the National Institute for Hospitality and
Tourism, NIHOTOUR.

“NIHOTOUR is a parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Information
and Culture, and it is saddled with providing skills proficiency,
technical upgrading programmes and professional knowledge-based
education in the hospitality and tourism industry in Nigeria and West
Africa,” he said.

L-R:  Benue State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mrs. Ngunan Addingi; Benue State Deputy Governor, Mr. Benson Abounu; Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and the Director General of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Alhaji Nura Kangiwa, during the official take-off of the North Central Zonal Office of NIHOTOUR in Makurdi on Monday.
L-R: Benue State Commissioner for Information,
Culture and Tourism, Mrs. Ngunan Addingi; Benue State Deputy Governor,
Mr. Benson Abounu; Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai
Mohammed and the Director General of the National Institute for
Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Alhaji Nura Kangiwa, during the
official take-off of the North Central Zonal Office of NIHOTOUR in
Makurdi on Monday.

Mohammed said tourism has now become a major catalyst for
economic growth and social well-being of the citizenry in most

countries around the world, especially the developing countries.

According to him, the Travel, Hospitality, Tourism and other
related services in the country have over 1 million private establishments

employing over 9.8 million persons in the 36 States of the Federation and the
Federal Capital Territory.

The minister said the hospitality industry in Nigeria contributed
about 4.8% to Nigeria’s total national output (GDP) and utilized about
1.6% of Nigerians in the year 2016, adding that according to
PricewaterhouseCooper’s 2019 hospitality report, the Nigerian
hospitality industry was expected to grow by 12% yearly till 2023, making it

one of the fastest growing markets, before the advent of Covid-19.

The minister said the Federal Government had been doing a lot to
alleviate the impact of the pandemic, especially as it affected the
Creative and Tourism Sector, through its N75 billion Survival Fund for
Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, where the Federal Government has
paid 2,186 to  companies employing 12,117 individuals, under the
payroll support, as part of the efforts to cushion the effects of the
pandemic.

He thanked the Benue State Governor, Mr. Samuel Ortom, for building
and donating the edifice to NIHOTOUR and described the gesture as a
giant stride in the development of tourism in the state and the
country in general.

“Your Excellency, I want to thank you most sincerely for promise made
and promise kept. The donation of this magnificent edifice shows your
commitment to the growth of the Hospitality and Tourism sector in
Benue state and, by extension, improvement in the quality of service
delivery by the personnel that run the sector. You have indeed taken a
giant stride in this Sector, and we are most grateful to you,” Alhaji
Mohammed said.

Earlier, Governor Ortom, accompanied by the Deputy Governor, Mr.
Benson Abounu, and the Commissioner for Information, Culture and
Tourism, Ngunan Addingi, conducted the minister and the Director
General of NIHOTOUR, Alhaji Nura Kangiwa, round the institute, which
will be offering Certificate, Basic Advanced Certificate, Diploma,
Professional Certificate and Post-Graduate Diploma in various fields
in tourism and hospitality.

– Nov. 30, 2020 @ 15:27 GMT /

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