By Emmanuel Elebeke
In a bid to develop the Nigerian tourism sector, the National Planning Commission, NPC says it will offer technical support in the area of training, data collection and capacity building to the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, NTDC.
The Secretary to the commission, Barrister Ntufam Fidel Ugbo, made the pledge in Abuja during a courtesy visit to the NPC by the Director General of the NTDC, Mrs. Sally Mbanefo.
Barrister Ugbo, said that the commission will assist the NTDC through one of its parastatals, National Bureau of Statistics, NBS to capture data of visitors in flow, identify the kind of visitors they are expecting and what the visitors would want.
“NPC has parastatals. One of the them the NBS will partner with your NTDC to record visitors in flow, identify what kind of visitors you are expecting and what they want.”
In the area of training, he stated that the commission would offer overseas and local training to the staff of NTDC in a bid to help them perform better in their duties, which will in the long run facilitate in the rapid development of the sector in the areas such as security, administration, websites and tour guides.
The Secretary also promised to assist the NTDC in getting development partners that will help them as well as ensuring that the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) department of the commission offer assistance too.
Earlier in his speech, the Director General of NTDC, Mrs. Sally Mbanefo who led the delegation on the visit, requested for a working collaboration in the area of capacity building for staff.
She explained that the objective of the NTDC is focused on three goals which include: Rebuilding of NTDC, Growing the tourism locally for job creation and income generation for the Country, and also Reinventing the Nigerian tourism sector.
Mrs. Mbanefo, further mentioned some initiatives and projects that NTDC under her watch has embarked upon since she took over as the DG of the corporation as; domestic tourism promotion, establishing information desks at Nigerian Airport to provide tourism calendar, creating National tourism calendar, visit to tourist sites in the six- geo – political zones in the country and embarking on the green city project.
She lamented that Nigeria has an amazing 7,000 tourism sites across the country with only few of them being developed, harping on the need for all Nigerians to join in promoting the Nigerian tourism sector which she said has the capability of creating jobs, revenue generation and also empowering the grass roots as the sites are located in rural areas, which will in turn discourage rural urban migration