Ekiti State Government has promised to create a conducive business atmosphere for tourism and hospitality to thrive.
Mr Wale Ojo-Lanre, Senior Special Assistant to the state Gov. Kayode Fayemi on Tourism Development, gave the assurance at an interactive session with members of the Hoteliers’ Association of Ekiti State in Ado-Ekiti.
The interaction was in recognition of sufferings of hoteliers due to lockdown caused by the novel coronavirus.
It was aimed at finding ways to grow hospitality business in the state, according to a statement issued by Ojo-Lanre on Saturday.
He said that the event was also to distribute consignments of COVID-19 palliative items to the association.
The items included foods.
He said that Fayemi had put in place strategies for tourism and hospitality development.
He described the governor as a proponent of development tourism.
According to the aide, Fayemi is cosmopolitan and has vast experience in governance and administration.
He said that the governor was, therefore, laying the fundamentals for sustainable ‘germination, growth and blossoming’ of the state’s tourism sector.
Ojo-Lanre said that more incentives would soon be rolled out from the stable of the state government to encourage hoteliers and other stakeholders in the sector.
He noted that the COVID-19-induced lockdown had devastating effects on the hospitality industry.
“Governor Fayemi recognises and appreciates the immense contributions, sacrifices and endurance of members of the association during the COVID -19 lockdown.
“He is determined to cushion the effects, not only by the items donated, but by other impactful acts,” he said.
He said that the hotel and hospitality sub-sector played crucial roles in economy and should be supported.
Mr Kayode Oni, President, Highflier Hotel, applauded Fayemi at the session for determination to grow the tourism sector.
He said it was the first time the association was being formally recognised and engaged purposefully by a government in the state.
Oni appealed to Fayemi to review the multiple taxes imposed on hoteliers, adding that he should repair roads leading to some
Prof. Olatunji Akomolafe, Promoter of Cultural Centre Hotels, Ikere, said he was glad that the tourism sector was getting the desired attention from the state government.
He urged sustenance of the attention.
Akomolafe lauded Fayemi for instituting private/public participation in Ekiti tourism sector, saying that it was building a bridge of trust between the government and tourism stakeholders.
He called for a synergy of purpose between Ekiti tourism stakeholders, security agencies and members of transport unions.
Chief Samuel Korode, President, Ekiti State Hoteliers’ Association, lauded Fayemi for recognising the sufferings of the association’s members due to the COVID-19- induced restrictions.
Korode assured the government that the bags of food items would be well distributed to members of the association.
He promised that members of the association would partner with the government in building a virile tourism sector. (NAN)
Mr Wale Ojo-Lanre, Senior Special Adviser on Toursim Development to Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti on Tourism Development (second from right) with executives of the state hoteliers’ association during distribution of COVID-19 palliative.