Senate Seeks Closer Partnership to Grow Tourism Sector

By Ndubuisi Francis
The Senate has called for closer partnership between it and operators of the hospitality and tourism industry in order to maximise the immense potential in the sector for the overall benefit of the country.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Tourism and Culture, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, who made the call in Abuja at a one-day validation workshop on Hospitality, Travels and Tourism Trades, said there was need for stakeholders to forge a closer partnership to advance the tourism sector.
He expressed the readiness of the National Assembly to provide the enabling laws to advance the sector, adding that all that was required from the operators was for them to provide the legal framework.
The lawmaker regretted that the tourism sector, to a large extent, is not well organised because of the dearth of relevant laws, noting that with better organisation, it has greater potential to contribute to economic growth than many sectors of the economy.
In her address, the Director General, National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Mrs.Chika Balogun, said training and retraining of hospitality and tourism operators were indispensable to guarantee the much-needed growth and transformation.
She noted that the time for rhetorics was over and challenged all the stakeholders to forge a common front to take the sector to the desired height, adding that “the process of bridging the gap between training and industry takes formal structure through the establishment of some kind of qualifications framework.”