The Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero, has promised to assist the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies to rebrand Kano as a veritable cultural tourism destination on the West Coast of Africa.
This was contained in a statement by Susan Akporaiye, President of the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies.
The statement said the Emir gave the assurance when he received Akporaiye and her delegation, who were on a courtesy visit to his palace on Tuesday.
The monarch disclosed that historically, Kano was at the centre of Trans Sahara trade and tourism, hence deserved the support of NANTA and foreign airlines to blossom again in spite of the challenges of COVID-19 pandemic.
Bayero said: “Our people are notable travellers and traders, we have the oldest airport connecting the world, also a huge travel point for Hajj pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia.
“So NANTA needs to help reposition the airport and Kano as a destination.”
The Emir praised the leadership of NANTA for its intention to open a travel academy in Kano and also for its zonal office building project, which was the first of its kind at zonal administration of NANTA in the country.
According to him, he will mobilise both the government and people of Kano to ensure that the building, which is at 80 per cent completion, is fully completed and inaugurated.
Bayero appreciated NANTA on the award bestowed upon him and Governor Abdulahi Ganduje of Kano State for making Kano the most peaceful state in Nigeria.
He also commended NANTA’s foresight and affirmed that Kano indeed was peaceful and home to all Nigerians and foreigners inclusive.
He said: “We are honoured by your award to me as the most Eminent Traditional Ruler and to my governor as the Governor of the Year for his strides in making Kano a peaceful destination.
“I will try my best to reach out to the governor and to see how we shall be at your national event in Abuja by November.”
Bayero urged NANTA to prepare for the Kano Durbar Festival, which the association must package exclusively with air transportation, particularly for the Hajj pilgrimage.
In her response, Akporaiye urged the monarch to help drive the completion of the NANTA zonal head office building, which is expected to house a travel academy for Kano youths and women who will be availed with skill acquisition trainings.
She also intimated the monarch on his role as the royal father of the day at its prestigious upcoming NANTA award in Abuja slated for November 2021.
She said during the event, the Emir Bayero would be conferred with the Most Eminent Traditional Ruler award for the peace and security in Kano State, Nigeria.
Akporaiye said: “Your highness, NANTA is proud to be associated with you and the governor of Kano State, for the dedication and passion in keeping Kano out of the troubles of insecurity.
“Also, for the stringent call to promote Kano as a cultural tourism and hospitality destination.”