Mr. Ayodeji Olonilua, the chief executive officer of Zenith Travels and Tours Limited, considered an expert in the Nigerian tourism industry, has called on government at all levels to show commitment towards the development of the country’s economy through the provision of basic infrastructure facilities, that will help encourage investment and reduce the cost of doing business.
Speaking in an interactive session in Lagos, Olonilua, Mr. Olonilua disclosed that the country’s immense tourism potentials are yet to be tapped due to the absence of key infrastructures that support tourism development.
He said: “Government has not shown adequate commitment to the development of the country’s tourism sector, it has only been paying lip service to growing the sector. It is a known fact that tourism will fetch in more revenue for the country, more than the present earnings from crude oil. The country’s tourism sector has enormous potentials, compared to other countr[ies] that have become attractive tourist destinations and which have made money from it.
“For the sector to develop, there is the need to put the necessary infrastructure in place, this will help boost the tourism sector as more people will be attracted to visit important tourist sites in various locations of the country.”
He noted that as part of its contribution to the development of tourism in the country, it has concluded plans to bring into the country, the president of American Language Learning Institute, Mr. Jean Simon, on a promotional visit, with the aim of meeting with key stakeholders in the country’s tourism and educational sectors.
He disclosed that the visit will help boost tourism, education, and provide the platform for interaction between tourism experts from both Nigeria and the United States of America.
He further stated that it is presently holding discussions with a school in the United Kingdom for an exchange program that will make it possible for students of the school to visit important tourist destinations in the country and also learn more about Africa and Nigeria.
Olonilua noted that its activities is part of its contribution to the development of the country’s tourism sector and also a contribution to the country’s re-branding campaign and drive for improved foreign exchange earnings.
He disclosed that it has taken over 2,000 children to excursion outside the shores of the country since its inception ten years ago, taking advantage of the exclusive rights granted it by Kingswood, as the sole authorized agent in the whole of Africa for its Camp Beaumont in the UK.
“We have discovered that children’s education goes beyond classroom learning, hence the need for inculcation of curriculum-based activities into their education activities. Annually, we take over 200 students from different schools across the country to tourist and educative destinations outside the country. The children undergo 65 educational programs outside their normal educational curricula, but which is designed to further promote their learning,” Olonilua concluded.