In a bid to boost the tourism sector in Nigeria, the Chairman, Carnival Calabar, Sir. Gabe Onah on Wednesday, paid a courtesy visit to the Conservator- General, National Park Service (NPK), Ibrahim Musa Goni.
The visit which took place in Abuja, created an avenue for the two organizations to discuss on sustainable ways to ensure enhanced revenue generation.
In his remarks, Mr. Onah stressed on the need to pluck the low hanging fruits within the two organisations, noting that no country is better than Nigeria in tourism if the appropriate bodies take the ‘Bull by the horns’, through harnessing the country’s tourism sites.
According to him, “Nigeria is heartily endowed with natural tourist sites but it is challenging to know that the country hasn’t harnessed the sites to a brim, forgetting that this would serve as a means to generate revenue and contribute reasonable percentage in injecting of funds to the economy.
“However, this is one amidst other reasons why I think this collaboration is very necessary at this point in time,” he added.
In the same vein, the Senior Special Assistant on Events to the Cross River State Governor, Hon Kenn Aklah who was part of the team, stated that there is a need for the National Park Service to do more conservation by improving the crafting on the facilities that would attract tourists to spend days than expected and in turn yielding more revenue for the sector and the government.
In his words, “It is high time the National Park Service looked inward to map out logical strategies that would attract revenue generation. This would in no small measure boost the tourism sector in Nigeria”.
Also speaking, the International Consultant of the Calabar Carnival, Ambassador Ikeh Ukoh, said the National Park Service should step up by doing all it can to rebrand the Parks to bring the service to greater limelight.
“It is better if we tell our story by ourselves rather than foreigners telling the story for us. We need to work on giving the Nigeria tourism sector a new face lift so that the story can be better told and that’s one other reason why we are here,” he said.
Reacting to the Carnival Calabar team, the Conservator-General, National Park Service, Dr Ibrahim Goni expressed delight in all that was said and pledged to support every objective move that will bring NPK to limelight and generate the expected Returns on Investment.
“It is a great deal to have Nigerians as your team who have passion for their country’s tourism sector.
“I have listened to you all and be rest assured that this discussion would be critically looked into, perhaps, the tourism sector would indeed take a new dimension with this anticipated collaboration if really found worthy”, he expressed.
He added that the private sector will be encouraged to partner with NPK, so as to improve efficiency and effectiveness.