By Jimoh Babatunde
As the World Tourism clan prepares to storm Ghana next month for the 30th anniversary of the World Tourism Day, Kano State government says the state is ready to host the countryâ€™s edition.
With the theme of this yearâ€™s edition as â€˜Tourism _ Celebrating Diversityâ€™, it is meant to focus on the worldâ€™s cultural wealth and the important role sustainable tourism plays in revitalizing local traditions and making them flourish as they cross other cultures.
Speaking with Vanguard Newspapers during the week, the Executive Director, Kano State Tourism Bureau, Alhaji Rabiu Ado, said hosting of World Tourism Day activities are not new to the state and that the bureau has lined up a lot of program to reflect the theme of this yearâ€™s celebration as outlined by the United Nationsâ€™ World tourism organisation (UNWTO).
â€œA huge variety of local customs co_exist all over the world, be they languages, religions, architecture, food, politics or natural environments. This diverse environment has allowed the travel and tourism industry to thrive and become the largest single export industry and a leading force in the service sector.â€
He said just as the UNWTO noted that every region of the world is distinct and thus has something both to offer and gain through travel and tourism, particularly less developed nations and that it is the responsibility of industry stakeholders to harness these opportunities whilst facing the long term challenges engendered by travel and tourism.
â€˜Tourism _ Celebrating Diversityâ€™ highlights this varied environment which is at the very centre of tourism.
Diversity has indeed been the motor behind travel and tourism for centuries.It is our responsibility to promote the sustainable development of the industry whilst conserving the unique facets present on the globe.
Alhaji Ado explained that the bureau has lined up children events, sports activities; seminars and catering competition where prizes will be given out. He added that they are working with the Federal Ministry of Tourism on how to have a successful celebration innSeptember.
Meanwhile, theÂ Minister of Tourism for Ghana, Mrs. Juliana Azumah Mensah, has urged the media and the public to support the Ministry to ensure a successful hosting of the World Tourism in the country from September 21st to 27th September this year.
Ghana was elected to host the celebration that would be on the them: â€œTourism, Celebrating Diversityâ€, on behalf of Africa. It is part of the 7th Session of the United Nations World Tourism Organization.
Mrs Mensah told Editors of print and electronic media at the launch of the event in Accra that tourism has become a vital tool for pro_poor development which could create more jobs and generate wealth.
She said a successfully celebration would boost Ghanaâ€™s international image and give it a worldwide publicity.
Mrs Mensah said it would also attract investment to the tourism sector and improve the countryâ€™s balance of payment and Gross Domestic Product.
She stressed that to maximize benefits of the celebration, Ghana needed to partner with the media to inform Ghanaians about the event. Mrs Mensah said the programme for the celebration included communication workshops.
The Editors appealed to the Government to give sufficient budgetary allocation to the Ministry to enable it invest in tourism and to involve the private sector in the development of the industry through creative and attractive ventures.