LAGOS — Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State, yesterday, said despite the Supreme Court judgement vesting the registration and grading of hotels, among others to state, the Federal Government still had an important role to play in enhancing the tourism sector.
Fashola spoke in Ikeja while inaugurating a six-man committee on Grading of Hotels and Hospitality Establishment as well as a five-man Appeal Committee on Grading of Hotels and Hospitality Establishment, in Ikeja.
The inauguration came barely two weeks after the Supreme Court ruled that state and not the Federal Government has the right to regulate the activities of hotels and other hospitality establishments in the country.
The six man committee on Grading of hotels and hospitality establishments is headed by Mr. Lanre Segun, while, Mr. Gbolahan Elias, heads the Appeal Committee on grading of hotels and hospitality establishments.
One of the members of the Appeal’s committee is a former Presidential candidate of the National Conscience Party, NCP, Mr. Dele Momodu.
According to Fashola: “The Federal Government still has a very big role to play to enhance tourism. One of the roles is the way they manage the border post of this country. Borders are the first point of contact for tourists coming into the country.
“The kind of training that the central government gives to immigration officers and the courtesy that they show to tourists is instructive in whether the country will be a real tourist player or not. That is where the first impression of the country is made.
“The way we manage the administration of visa issuance in the country is another role. Can a tourist get visa at the point of entry? These are among the things that I believe the Federal Government must work out openly and transparently, so that we can reap the benefits.
“There is so much the country has to put out there. It must be a multi-jurisdictional collaboration where everyone will manage its own allotted role. With this, the tourism industry will be effective.”
The governor lamented that tourism and hospitality establishments in many parts of Africa were major avenues for creating employment and generating revenue, but had not been tapped fully in Nigeria.
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