By Taiye Olayemi
The Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria (FTAN) says it plans to market the acquatic endowment of Lagos State in commemoration of the 2022 edition of the World Tourism Day (WTD) slated for Sept. 27.
Mr Nkereuwem Onung, National President of FTAN, during a news conference in Lagos on Monday, said this was to ensure the state explore its acquatic endowments for revenue generation.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme for this year’s WTD is “Rethinking Tourism”.
Onung said that going by the theme for the day, government and the private sector needed to engage in lots of thinking to reposition the tourism sector.
He noted that the federation had designed a number of activities for the day to draw Nigerians’ attention to the enormity of investment potential in the state, in the areas of acquatic tourism.
According to him, there will be a free boat cruise from Tarzan Jetty in Victoria Island to Tarkwa Bay Beach, which will showcase the beauty of exploring the waterways for tourism purposes.
“It is time to show the world the business of tourism, we want to assess the water economy in Lagos State, we want people to see that lots of revenue can be generated on the waterways through tourism.
“One of the activities for the day will be the biggest watercraft floatella, draped on Nigerian colours, this will showcase boat cruises on Lagos waterways and the adventure in water.
“Also, we will be having a dinner and award night where three individuals who have contributed to the growth of the tourism industry in the last one year will be apprecaiated.
“Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State will be appreciated for maintaining security in the state and his numerous investments in the tourism industry, this is to encourage the state to do more,” he said.
According to Onung, FTAN in the next one year will be committed to promoting acquatic tourism in the state and ensuring that jobs are created through the sector.
“We are looking at how government can look into that aspect of the economy, invest more in it, make the waterways safe for all and neat, a lot of revenue can be generated there,” he said.
Alhaji Gani Balogun, Managing Director, Association of Tourists Boat Operators and Water Transporters of Nigeria (ATBOWATON), also Chairman Local Organising Committee of the WTD, said that individuals would have paid N1,800 each to experience a boat ride, if they were to go on their own.
Balogun noted that the Takwa Bay beach was choosen due to the minimal water waves and the neatness of the water.
He urged Nigerians to make it a date to get educated on how revenue could be generated on the waterways as experts would be engaged to talk briefly on the business aspect.
He appreciated the Nigerian Navy and the Marine Police for their efforts in collaborating with FTAN to host the biggest boat cruise in Nigeria.
“We can also have boat cruises like those experienced in Florida and some other developed nations because we have all it takes, this is what we want to show to the world on Sept. 27, during the world tourism day.
“The boat cruise starts 10.00a.m.,” he said. (NAN)
Edited by Folasade Adeniran