…Hails introduction of tourism in secondary schools
By Jimoh Babatunde
As Nigeria joins the rest of the world in the celebration of the World Tourism Day today, the Director General of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, NIHOTOUR, Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa, has called for close collaboration and synergy between government and the private sector.
The World Tourism Day, which is celebrated on September 27 globally, offers opportunity for stakeholders to come up with strategic framework that can deepen the opportunities in the tourism industry by addressing the challenges inherent in its multi-sectorial operations.
Alhaji Nura Kangiwa noted that NIHOTOUR is celebrating this year’s world Tourism Day in collaboration with the Lagos State Chapter of the Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN) and TARZAN Boats as a symbol of the cordial relationship between the organized private sector and the Institute in manpower and capacity building of professional practice in the hospitality and travel-tourism industry of the country.
He added that it is by having close and healthy working relationship with operators in the industry that NIHOTOUR can design and streamline its course programs to suit the industry needs for efficient and effective service delivery that will command customer satisfaction and continuous patronage.
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The Director General said the theme of this year’s celebration, “Tourism and Rural Development” is apt and in line with the desire of the federal government to open up the rural areas for enhanced national growth and development via the diversification of the economy that includes the tourism industry.
He said that based on its mandate, NIHOTOUR as a training Institute will play its part for the evolution of knowledge-based and informed professional conducts in the service industry that tourism and hospitality are.
He then called on stakeholders to encourage and sponsor their staff for training and re-training so as to be abreast with global trends and practices in the industry for better service delivery that meets international standards and best practices, noting that tourism is a social, cultural and economic activity which if properly harnessed can develop the non-oil sector of the Nigerian economy as veritable source of revenue in view of the drastic shortfall in oil revenue in recent times.
Meanwhile, Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa has commended the Federal Government over the introduction of tourism in the curriculum of secondary schools in the country.
Alhaji Kangiwa, who gave the commendation while declaring open a Train the Trainer program for teachers of tourism in the Federal Capital Territory organized by the Institute in Abuja, said tourism remains one of the world’s biggest employer of labour and a substantial contributor to the GDP of most countries.
The Director General noted that with the present spate of youth unemployment resulting into youth restiveness tourism as a service industry has the capacity to offer employment opportunities to our teeming youths, stimulate Nigeria’s economic growth, generate foreign exchange and contribute to domestic earnings through fees and taxes
Speaking further, Kangiwa said The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism has the mandate to provide skills proficiency, technical upgrading programmes and professional knowledge based education in the Hospitality and Tourism Industry in Nigeria, calling on all interested individuals, practitioners and stakeholders to seize the opportunity of enrolling for the Institute’s programs in one or more of its campuses in the six geopolitical zones of the country including Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
Participants at the Train the Trainer program who were drawn from selected secondary schools in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja expressed their delight with the training as, according to them, they will be better equipped to teach tourism as a subject and impact their students with better knowledge of the subject