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NTDC wants youths to explore opportunities in tourism sector

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The National Tourism Development Commission, (NTDC), South-South zone, has urged youths in Cross River State, to take advantage of self-employment opportunities in the Nigerian tourism sector.

The South-South Zonal Coordinator, Mrs Ntiense Olaoye, made the call recently in Calabar, during the celebration of World Tourism Day, themed, ‘Tourism and job, a better future for all.”Olaoye said the Commission has embarked on an initiative known as ‘domestic tourism’, which will encourage mostly youths to be self-employed through entrepreneurship.

She said: “What tourism has done so far is to make people become creative, become empowered and we have done so much.“Like I always tell people, during the carnival, it is not the parading that is the main thing, but the business trending most especially the petty businesses. People showcase their products, craft and everything. People are thinking of how to initiate things that they can showcase.

“Presently, we are trying to see how we can develop our domestic tourism and if we have to do that, we have to try to encourage others, most especially our youths to develop themselves by not depending on the government. You know tourism cuts across everything; tourism is the work of life, and so we have to key into it, that is why the theme for this yåear is ‘Tourism and job, a better future for all’ is apt. So, if we can key into what tourism is providing for our youths, women, men, it will be better for all of us in the future.

“The problem is that most youths are not taking advantage of tourism. Don’t just wait for the government to do everything for you. I know the job of the government is to create the enabling environment, but you cannot wait for the government all the time, find something to do. There are a lot of entrepreneurship workshops going on and you can develop yourself with the knowledge.”

On his part, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Cross River State, Akpet Ogon, said the theme was apt as tourism transcends all aspects of job creation.

Ogon, who represented the State Governor, Senator Ben Ayade, stressed that tourism could be used to showcase the state culture by engaging people to work as tour guides in tourism sites across the state.He said: “Jobs can be created from tourism. We showcase our culture definitely, we will have opportunities for our brothers and sisters to be engaged one way or the other, the same thing with our tourist attractions. We can also get them engage as tourist guides in our tour sites across the state. We should identify them and take deliberate steps in marketing them out to the rest of the world.”


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