The Director-General, Ekiti State Council for Arts and Culture, Wale Ojo-Lanre, on Saturday urged the Federal Government to create a separate Ministry of Tourism to enable the industry thrive better.
Ojo-Lanre made the call during an online tourism zoom meeting, with the theme: “Post-COVID-19: A Fresh Start for Tourism in Nigeria,” organised by the Nigeria Travel Week and Travelscope Magazine.
He said the tourism industry had only enjoyed minimal attention from the government because it had been merged with information.
He noted that this was necessary to harness the full potential of the industry for revenue generation.
The D-G also called for the establishment of a legal framework for the industry, which would spell out the jurisdiction of all practitioners in the industry.
Ojo-Lanre said this would give room for a more organised industry, where the practitioners and government would know their limit.
He said: “We urge President Muhammadu Buhari to look into this issue of tourism being merged with information sector.
“We need a separate tourism ministry and the establishment of a legal framework to make the industry flourish.
“Tourism cannot work without legal framework.
“The Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation has been working with an archaic military degree put in place over 40 years now.
“No tourism association or organisation has legal backing.
“When the legal framework is in place, investors will not exercise fear to commit their finances to tourism growth in any community.”
Ojo-Lanre said Ekiti State was opened for investors as Governor Kayode Fayemi had put necessary action in place to provide tourism legal framework.
He said: “Ekiti State is ready to receive tourists and investors.
“Government is ready and willing to provide the enabling environment for businesses to thrive.
“Ekiti is a paragon of tourism activities.
“We have the home of Ifa, Osun and Ogun in Ekiti State, where people can familiarise themselves with history.
“We have lots of tourists sights like the Ikogosi Warm Spring, Arinta Waterfall, Olosunta Hill, Esa Cave, mountains and hills good for hiking.”