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Union wants separation of tourism, information ministries in Imo

28 September 2013, 19:12

Owerri - Dr Godfrey Nwakonobi, Chairman of the Imo chapter of the Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN), on Saturday urged the Imo Government to excise its Ministry of Tourism and Culture Ministry from its Ministry of Information.

Nwakonobi made the call during the celebration of the 2013 World Tourism Day in Owerri.

He urged the state government to treat tourism as a preferred sector in the state, while calling for an improvement in the level of private sector investment in tourism.

Besides, Nwakonobi called for the introduction of incentives such as tax rebate and soft loans with liberal terms for potential investors in the tourism sector.

He said that such arrangements would boost revenue generation and job creation in the state.

The guest lecturer, Ford Ozumba, the Director-General of Imo State Orientation Agency (ISOA), called for the development of recreational facilities in areas outside the urban centres.

Ozumba, who was represented by Prof. Eugene Opara, noted that many of the country's water resources were undeveloped tourism assets, which could be developed and harnessed for the benefit of the society.

"A lot of undeveloped rivers, lakes and canals are wasting away; such assets can be developed into veritable tourist attractions.

"The lakes in Abadaba and Oguta can be turned into multi-million naira ventures, which are capable of sustaining the economy of their local governments, if well-harnessed," he said.

Ozumba also called on the government to design appropriate laws and regulations to promote efficient and sustainable water use.


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