Tourism con­trib­uted N800 bil­lion to La­gos GDP in 2017, says Am­bode

‘N12.8b worth prop­erty lost to fire in La­gos in one year’

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - NEWS - By Gbenga Salau

LA­GOS State Gover­nor Ak­in­wunmi Am­bode has said that the tourism sec­tor con­trib­uted about N800 bil­lion ($2.2 bil­lion) to the La­gos Gross Do­mes­tic Prod­uct (GDP) in 2017.

He said with the in­fras­truc­ture and re­sources be­ing de­ployed in the sec­tor, the fig­ure is ex­pected to dou­ble or triple in the next five years.

Am­bode, who said this yes­ter­day at the La­gos Tourism Sum­mit with the theme “Des­ti­na­tion La­gos: To­wards A Sus­tain­able Touris­mDriven Econ­omy,” stated that the enor­mous re­sources be­ing de­ployed in phys­i­cal and so­cial in­fras­truc­ture across the state would be­gin to crys­tallise by De­cem­ber into mega struc­tures that would sup­port tourism and mar­ket the state as a smart des­ti­na­tion.

The gover­nor said the quest to trans­form the state to a tourism hub made the state to plead for the con­trol of wast­ing away fed­eral as­sets like the Na­tional Arts The­atre, Na­tional Mu­seum and Na­tional Sta­dium and pos­si­bly de­clare the in­ten­tion to have the Mur­tala Muhammed In­ter­na­tional Air­port con­ces­sioned to the state.

Ac­cord­ing to him, the tourism master plan is fo­cused on six key sec­tors: cul­ture and her­itage; film, art and en­ter­tain­ment; busi­ness tourism; na­ture and ad­ven­ture; med­i­cal and well­ness and then beach and leisure.

Mean­while, in his key­note ad­dress, for­mer Pres­i­dent of Ghana, John Ma­hama, sug­gested that part­ner­ship be­tween La­gos and Ac­cra is ca­pa­ble of mak­ing the cities of La­gos in Nige­ria and Ac­cra in Ghana choice des­ti­na­tions for tourism in West Africa. Ma­hama stated that the part­ner­ship among mem­bers of Eco­nomic Com­mu­nity of West African States (ECOWAS) is im­por­tant be­cause the pros­per­ity or in­sta­bil­ity of one will rub on other coun­tries within the sub-re­gion.

How­ever, Min­is­ter of In­for­ma­tion and Cul­ture, Al­haji Lai Mo­hammed, who re­it­er­ated the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment’s de­sire to make cul­ture and tourism a new oil re­source for Nige­ria, said the po­lice had been di­rected to set up an anti-piracy unit in each state of the fed­er­a­tion.

In an­other de­vel­op­ment, La­gos State Com­mis­sioner for Spe­cial Du­ties and In­ter-gov­ern­men­tal Re­la­tions, Mr. Olus­eye Oladejo, has said that be­tween May 2017 and April 2018, La­gos State Fire Ser­vices and other safety re­spon­ders of the state gov­ern­ment had sal- vaged prop­erty worth N76.9 bil­lion from de­struc­tion, with N12.82 bil­lion worth of prop­erty lost to fire in­ci­dents.

Oladejo, who spoke at the on­go­ing min­is­te­rial press brief­ing to com­mem­o­rate the third an­niver­sary of Gover­nor Ak­in­wunmi Am­bode, noted that de­spite the size­able num­ber of in­ci­dents recorded, the state gov­ern­ment was able to re­spond promptly to emer­gen­cies thereby sav­ing lives and prop­erty.

The com­mis­sioner, who dis­closed that there are plans to re­move all aban­doned ve­hi­cles on the roads to com­ple­ment emer­gency re­cov­ery ef­forts and pre­vent mishaps on streets and ma­jor high­ways in the state, said the move was aimed at fur­ther ad­dress­ing traf­fic de­con­ges­tion and avert­ing se­cu­rity chal­lenges as­so­ci­ated with aban­doned ve­hi­cles.

For­mer Min­is­ter of State for De­fence, De­mola Seriki ( left); Min­is­ter of In­for­ma­tion and Cul­ture, Lai Mo­hammed; for­mer Ghana­ian Pres­i­dent, John Dra­mani Ma­hama; La­gos State Gover­nor Ak­in­wunmi Am­bode and the state’s Com­mis­sioner for Tourism, Arts and...

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