The Federal Government has called on operators of the Nigerian hospitality industry to collaborate with the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, NIHOTOUR, in manpower and capacity development to reposition the sector for better service delivery, enhanced performance and sustainable operations.
A press release by NIHOTOUR’s Director of Media and Public Relations, Mr. Ahmed Sule, said that the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinnbajo, made the call at the commissioning of Marriot Hotel in Lagos.
Osinbajo insisted that the sustainability of growth in the hospitality industry is heavily dependent on the capacity of human resources and talent, which NIHOTOUR was established to provide for the nation’s travel tourism and hospitality industry.
Speaking through the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Osinbajo further called on all stakeholders in the industry to place greater focus on and priority attention to building capacity and harnessing talents of the indigenous people and vast tourism potentials of the communities where they operate in the country.
He further extolled the resilience of the hospitality industry in bouncing back to operations after it was heavily hit by the COVID-19 pandemic; expressing delight that the industry is taking advantage of technological innovations to adapt to the new norms of providing contact-less services, as well as strictly observing the non-pharmaceutical COVID-19 protocols in its impeccable business operations within the sector.
Reiterating the Federal Government’s commitment to continuously formulate effective policies that will provide the enabling environment for the hospitality industry in Nigeria to operate in line with global best practices and compete favourably with other world class hotels, Prof. Osinbajo thanked the proprietor of Marriot Hotel for choosing to invest in Nigeria and for erecting the magnificent edifice that is today the pride of the Nigerian hospitality industry.
The commissioning was graced by dignitaries who include former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan; Governors Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa State and Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State; former Governors Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State and Ahmed Makarfi of Kaduna State.
Others in attendance are: the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, alongside other traditional rulers; Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa, Director General of NIHOTOUR and Mr. Folorunsho Coker, Director General of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, NTDC.