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Other Media

The enormous toll of COVID-19 on international tourism has now become clear, with World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) data showing the cost up to May was already three times that of the 2009 Global Economic Crisis. As the situation continues to evolve, the United Nations specialized agency has provided the first comprehensive insight into the impact of the pandemic, both in tourist numbers and lost revenues, ahead of the upcoming release of up-to-date information on travel restrictions worldwide.

Every avid Nigerian traveller or globetrotter has one time or the other been referred to as Ajala by their friends, families or acquaintances. Most even use the designation in their pseudo names; names like Ajalabug, Wondering Ajala, Ajalaman, The travelling Ajala. This vocabulary that has become so familiar and part of the Nigerian travel lingua still has little or less known about the origin of its name.

The African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) have jointly called for African countries to strengthen their economic integration. They made this call at the recent launch of the Africa Regional Integration Index 2019 (ARII 2019). This is the second such index to be produced, the first being ARII 2016. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a 22% fall in international tourist arrivals during the first quarter of 2020, the latest data from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) shows. According to the United Nations specialized agency, the crisis could lead to an annual decline of between 60% and 80% when compared with 2019 figures. This places millions of livelihoods at risk and threatens to roll back progress made in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) and other unions in the tourism and hotel industry have rejected the plan by some notable hotels in the country to owe workers’ salaries under the pretext of COVID-19 pandemic. The unions said they are already engaging the managements of the hotels from their deliberate attempt to owe workers, March and April salaries.

President of the Hotel and Personal Service Senior Staff Association (HAPSSSA), Adegbe Iyeh, said some employers in the industry are taking some actions contrary to industrial relations rules, which may jeopardize industrial peace in the sector.

The Director General, National Council for Arts and Culture, Otunba Segun Runsewe has donated Covid19 Personal Protection Equipment to members of the Nigeria Police Force. This donation which is a continuation of the support of the Council to the fight against Covid 19 epidemic is to enhance the security of officers and men of the force who are in the front line in the effort to curb Covid 19 epidemic. Making this donation, Otunba Runsewe commended the gallantry of the Police Force and their commitment to the enforcemnet of Covid 19 guidelines. 

Air travel, safety, booking difficulties and cost remains some of the barriers travellers in Africa currently endure. The findings of the recent African Traveller Report 2019 by the Sabre Corporation revealed that air travel remained inaccessible to the majority of African citizens, and increased by just 2 percent since 2016. The company interviewed 5 869 people from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. The report revealed that only 26 percent of Africans travelled by air in the past 24 months.

A bronze statue that was looted from what is now Nigeria more than a century ago will be returned, Cambridge University in Britain said, as Nigeria's government announced a new campaign Thursday for the return of the West African nation's looted and smuggled artifacts from around the world.

The cockerel was taken in 1897 from the Court of Benin and given to the university several years later. The statue was removed from public view in 2016 after students protested, saying it represented a colonial narrative.

Nigeria's minister of information and culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, welcomed the return of the cockerel, especially the role of the students in bringing about the repatriation of the bronze statue.

When the rains were late this July, Gambians offered up prayers in the country’s mosques and churches for the troubled agricultural sector. Torrential downpours ensued, but they were followed by dark clouds shadowing the second pillar of the Gambian economy – tourism. The news of UK travel company Thomas Cook’s bankruptcy and its immediate cancellation of all flights to the West African nation was met with disbelief by hoteliers, taxi drivers and workers connected with the winter holiday season, which boosts incomes from November to March.  

To reinforce the ongoing protection efforts in Yankari Game Reserve, conservationists have fitted six elephants with GPS/Satellite Collars to help provide real-time tracking of elephant herds. Country Director, Nigeria Programme, Wild Conservation Society (WCS), Mr. Andrew Dunn said the device will allow ranger teams to shadow the elephants at all times and alert the reserve manager whenever elephants are in danger or stray outside the reserve.

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