-Highlight Govt’s Intervention And Expectations From Stakeholders
Lagos State Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture has said that the sustainable recovery of the Tourism and Entertainment industry from the ravaging Covid-19 pandemic should be jointly pursued by both the State Government and the Stakeholders in the tourism and entertainment sector.
Making this submission during a virtual stakeholders’ session with practitioners in the Industry, the Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Pharm (Mrs.) Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, revealed several plans already put in place by the State Government and the Ministry to ensure that the various stakeholders in the tourism and entertainment industry fully recover from the inactivity in the industry occasioned by covid-19 pandemic.
According to her, “the State Government on its part is focusing its attention on the development of domestic tourism such that the various tourism sites across the State would be revamped and made attractive to local tourists, adding that a documentary that will market the Lagos brand as choice destination to potential tourists within and outside the country is also being packaged by the Ministry.
At the virtual engagement with the stakeholders tagged “POST COVID-19 Sustainable recovery: Pathway for Tourism, Arts and Culture” , the Commissioner sought the involvement of the stakeholders in the development of a Tourism Calendar that will be all encompassing and that will reflect the interest of the various stakeholders in the tourism and entertainment industry .
Speaking on other initiatives of the State Government to ensure a sustainable recovery of the industry, Akinbile-Yussuf disclosed that plans have already been perfected by the Ministry to establish the Lagos Creative Academy to train practitioners in the area of Directing, Producing, Script Writing among others , informing that the Academy which will operate both physical and online classes is billed to commence operations later this year.
“ We have also indicated our interest to establish Lagos Tourism Endowment Fund, create tourism markets around tourism sites, committed 1 Billion Naira as seed capital for practitioners in tourism and hospitality sector, and we’re also embarking on registration and classification of tourism establishments across the State among several others. The contributions of our stakeholders for all these initiatives is highly anticipated such that it can be very sustainable and the practitioners will take ownership of all these projects,” the Commissioner explained.
Speaking on the expectations of the Government from the stakeholders in the Tourism and Entertainment industry, the Commissioner emphasized the need for the practitioners to ensure professionalism and sincerity of purpose that will encourage investors to invest in the creative industry.
She said, “We should ask why people are no longer interested in investing in film making and other creative activities, we should ask why an industry that people are always competing to sponsor its activities is now at the mercy of investors. As a matter of fact more efforts needs to be directed towards restoring the image of the industry as a way of stimulating the interest of investors.”
She urged the leadership of the various Associations under Tourism and Entertainment industry to champion the call for registration of all practitioners with the State Government. This, according to her, will not only help in identifying real and genuine practitioners but would also assist in accessing windows of opportunities from the State Government.
Akinbile-Yussuf enjoined the practitioners to explore the opportunity of fifty percent rebate for registration and renewal fees already approved by the Ministry for the year 2020, saying that stricter measures would be applied for unregistered organisations from next year.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. Solomon Bonu also used the occasion to appreciate the leadership of Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria, FTAN , Lagos State Chapter for the presentation of the reviewed tourism master plan to the state government, assuring that the stakeholders would be duly communicated on the implementation process before the end of the year.
He harped on synergy between the Ministry and the various practitioners in the Tourism, Entertainment, Arts and Culture, saying that harmonious relationship was crucial to the development of the industry.
In the course of the Zoom meeting, questions were asked by the stakeholders on the planned classification of hospitality and tourism outlets in the State and on how the practitioners can know the Association to relate with.
The practitioners, were, however implored to relate with the Ministry for further clarifications on the various Associations and the planned classifications of hotels and tourism establishments in the State .