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Culture and Tourism

Odusanwo Receives Enconmium, Conferred The ATB Global Brand Ambassador



Joel Ajayi
The President of the African Tourism Board (ATB), Mr. Cuthbert Ncube has conferred the Board’s Global Brand Ambassador of ATB on Chief Abiodun Odusanwo and lauded the uncommon leadership style of Chief Odusanwo in Championing the cause of tourism promotion as head of the ITPN Institute, and in particular, the highlights on  the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) in its annual flagship event; the Tourism Transportation Summit and Expo during the closing ceremony of the 6th edition of the Summit and Expo held in Abuja.

Chief Abiodun Odusanwo who is the National President of the Institute for Tourism Professionals of Nigeria (ITPN) and organizer of the National Tourism Transportation Summit and Expo in collaboration with public and private sector industrial players and stakeholders of the industry, bagged the award in view of the needed enlightenment campaigns and much promotion and publicity he accorded the AfCFTA regime implementation that if researched papers presented at the Summit are to be  adequately adhered to, Africa’s dream of a liberal single market economy would be achieved.

Mr. Ncube who stated that ATB aims at ensuring that Africa becomes one tourism destination of choice in the world, noted that it is the promotional activities of the likes of Chief Abiodun Odusanwo at the ITPN in tourism professional certification and promotional activities such as the National Tourism Transportation Summit and Expo that the dream of entrenching Tourism as a vital sectorial player in African economy will be realizable. 

In his acceptance speech, Chief Odusanwo who expressed his gratitude for the honour done to him by the leadership of the African Tourism Board, stated further that the award is a wake-up call for him to do more in his efforts at promoting travel tourism and hospitality in Nigeria and Africa as a whole in terms of professional certificate of the manpower that will deliver competent service in the industry in entrench tourism as the preferred sector in national and continental economic diversification drives.

Chief Odusanwo further call on all stakeholders and key players in the industry to cooperate with one another in mutual synergy for the growth and development of the industry, stressing the Nigerian tourism industry should not suffer much policy summersault if players in the industry, particularly the organized private sector are united in their goals for a dynamic and purposeful industry that tourism is meant to be.

Mr. Ncube who was in Nigeria at the instance of the National Tourism Transportation Summit and Expo, had earlier delivered a paper at the Summit titled: Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want and the AfCFTA Agreement said Africa has the potentials and capacity in both material and human resources to bail itself out of its scourge of underdevelopment if the people will look inward rather than outside for its developmental solutions. 

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Creative Industry

Nihoutour To Host Biggest Gastronomy Festival In Abuja



Joel Ajayi

The Management of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR) have announced their hosting of Gastronomy Festival at the sprawling Abuja International Conference Centre on the 16th and 17th of June, 2023. 

This year’s Gastronomy Festival is the third consecutive food and beverage exhibition and sampling event annually organized by NIHOTOUR since 2021. The theme for this year’s event is Culinary Arts: The Gate Way to Growing Tourism Destination.

Disclosing highlights of the Gastronomy Festival in his office in Abuja, Nura Sani Kangiwa, Director General and Chief Executive Officer of NIHOTOUR, said the event will feature amongst others, exhibition of indigenous gastronomy by exhibitors prominent among which are, the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), that will as usual, showcase indigenous Nigerian cuisines from the six-geopolitical zones of the country.

The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism of Nigeria is established by an Act of Parliament to train, certify and register personnel in Nigeria’s Hospitality, Travel and Tourism sector.

Accordingly, NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival is conceptualised to upskill Nigerian gastronomes on the nitty-gritties of the preparation and presentation of foods, especially Nigerian traditional cuisines, with the objective of improving the expertise of personnel in the industry. 

Moreover, due to the dearth of skilled culinary artists in Nigeria, NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival provides one of the best opportunities for hospitality and tourism stakeholders, students, and enthusiasts to have hands-on learning and perspectives on the sustainability of developing tourism destinations using activities of Gastronomy Festivals as promotional tools.  

Further to that, with the preponderance of ‘Bush Meat’ hunting, using traps, in Nigeria, which inadvertently endangers wildlife and hinders Nigeria’s wildlife conservation efforts, the Gastronomy Festival will copiously advocate for Responsible Tourism practises in Nigeria. 

Expectedly, NIHOTOUR’s Gastronomy Festival is one of the largest and most culturally eclectic culinary arts and related gastronomy event in Africa. The event attracts over 5000 visitors and industry stakeholders who participate in the experiential learning of food production, processes and indulge in free sampling of diverse Nigerian and international cuisines and beverages on display. 

Typically, the festival is laced with traditional gaiety and entertainments that highlight Nigeria’s rich cultural diversity, including musicals and dance choreography. 

In previous NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festivals, large corporate organizations, such as Fan Milk, Danone and the Diplomatic Community in Nigeria, including, China, Spain and Ethiopia showcased their countries’ food culture and revealed processes of cuisines preparation – from farm to the table.

This year’s event will attract more foreign missions and corporate Nigerian brands involved in food and beverage processing, research, and development. Following the successes of previous NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festivals, activities slated for this year’s 2-day event include Nigerian food and beverage exhibition by NIHOTOUR and other leading restaurant franchises; international cuisines showcasing by foreign missions in Nigeria; cooking competition by Nigerian culinary schools, ‘Jollof War’ by select West African chefs; and investiture of NIHOTOUR Fellowship on outstanding individuals who have immensely contributed to the development of Hospitality and Tourism sector in Nigeria. 

There would also be conferences involving Nigeria’s leading tourism and hospitality stakeholders and business operators, as members of the Hospitality and Tourism Sector Skills Council of Nigeria (HTSSCN). 

Additionally, NIHOTOUR would deliver training and masterclass for members of the Association of Nigerian Journalists and Travel Writers (ANJET).

The facilitators slated for ANJET training include Otunba Olusegun Runsewe, the Director General of National Council for Arts and Culture; Mr. Buky Ponle, the Managing Director of News Agency of Nigeria; and Peter Igho, the brain behind some of the most popular programs on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) that enthralled households in the 1970s and the 1990s. 

It is empirically evident that Gastronomy is currently one of the main tourisms ‘push and pull’ factors that attract travellers to a destination. 

Hence, gastronomy has become a strategic tourist product that contributes to employment of host community’s youths and women, creation of wealth for investors, increased revenue streams for governments and improving the value – chain of producing quality foods and processing the foods to hotels and catering outlets for the tourism industry. 

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