Declaring the workshop open, the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Deaconess Grace Gekpe ably represented by the Director of Domestic Tourism Mrs. Opakirite J. Nzobwu, praised NIHOTOUR, NTDC and NCAC for their collaboration in organizing this event.
The Welcome address was delivered by the Ag. Director General, National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, Alhaji Momoh A.M Kabir.
Goodwill Messages were given by the Directors General, National Council for Arts and Culture, (NCAC), Otunba Olusegun Runsewe (OON) represented by Mrs. Lami Ishaba; Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mr. Folorunsho Coker represented by Mrs. Adamma Afanga; and that of the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), Alhaji Yakubu Ibn Mohamed represented by Mrs. Maimuna Garba. Others are the President Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN), Alhaji Rabo Saleh; National President, Hospitality and Tourism Management Association of Nigeria (HATMAN), Mr. Samson Aturu; First Deputy National President, National Association of Nigerian Travel Agency (NANTA), Mrs. Susan Akporiaye and President of ANJET, Mr. Andrew Okungbowa.
At the Technical session of the Training, 10 (Ten) well researched, articulated and thought provoking papers were presented. They are:
- An Overview of the Travel and Tourism Industry by Sadat Umoru Lakorok, NIHOTOUR
- X-raying the Dynamics of Tour and Travel Business by Alhaji Ahmed Ojuolape
MD/CEO Empire Travels and Tours Ltd. represented by Mary Sadat Lakorok, NIHOTOUR
- Journalism Ethics and Tourism Reportage by Ahmed M. Sule, NIHOTOUR
- Management and Significance of Tourism Satellite Accounts by Yama Madugu, NIHOTOUR
- New Media and Digital Tourism by Bridget Yellow Duke,NIHOTOUR
- Approaches to Destination Management by Elijah Sheleph Dabak, NIHOTOUR
- Multi-Modal Concept for Tourism Development in Nigeria by Dr. Ghali Sheriff, University of Abuja.
- Global Ethics of Tourism by Edwin Enenta, NIHOTOUR
- Branding and Marketing of Nigerian Tourism for Global Acceptance by Emeka Agbasiere, NIHOTOUR
- Environment/Climate Change: Impact on Sustainable Tourism Development by Solomon Ugande, NIHOTOUR
The technical session also featured interactions with NIHOTOUR and NCAC. Here the Tourism writers were told about the giant strides the parastatals have made as well as some of the challenges facing them.
The Training though was meant for the Tourism Writers, it was also made to include media teams from NIHOTOUR, NCAC, Ministry of Information and Culture as well as NTDC.
From the paper presentations, interactions and deliberations; participants noted and agreed as follows:
- Tourism is beneficial to individuals, communities, states and nations, therefore, there is need for all stakeholders to live up to expectation and turn the potentials of the sector into reality.
- Greater Co-ordination is needed between stakeholders, to ensure sustainable tourism development in the industry.
- The role of travel writers goes beyond reporting; indeed they are a pressure group that can facilitate rapid change in the industry.
- Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) is a critical tool for tourism development. The Ministry and agencies in charge should adopt realistic approach towards having a useful Tourism statistics in Nigeria.
- Tourism and Culture agencies need to make their presence felt and be functional in every state, considering the importance of their mandates to tourism development.
- Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in charge of Tourism should be adequately funded for better performance.
- There is a dire need to privatize the tourist sites to make them functional.
- For Tourism to receive the desired attention from the government, a full Ministry of Tourism and Culture is advocated.
- Relevant agencies of government on tourism should create platforms to educate operators, managers of tourism destination and communities on crisis management.
- The Tourism Journalist owes the industry the duty of balanced reportage in accordance with professional code of conduct and ethics.
- NCAC Zonal offices should be given autonomy to run programmes or collaborate with other stakeholders and they should have diplomatic staff in all embassies.
- NIHOTOUR should do more by publicizing its programmes and activities through print, electronic media and Road shows.
- There is need to enlighten airport users on areas/zones for photo shoot.
- For the impact of Tourism to be felt in Nigeria, infrastructural facilities such as roads, airports, rail and water ways must be developed and well maintained.
The participants appreciated NIHOTOUR, NTDC and NCAC for making this ANJET training a reality. Agencies were therefore implored to make the Training programme an annual event, in view of its importance to Tourism promotion and development.