Dr Tricia Olufemi-Olumide, Managing Director, Ziba Beach Resorts, on Saturday called on the newly appointed Minister of Tourism, Ms Lola Ade-John, to work on piling the ocean in the coastal area of Lagos.
Olufemi-Olumide made the call while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
She said ocean piling was neccessary to guide against destruction of people’s businesses along the coastal area due to the problem of high tides.
NAN reports that tides are the alternating rise and fall of the sea surface.
She noted that this problem had frustrated many tourism investors out of business and this was a better time for government to wade into the issue.
“I have always been interested in contributing my quota to the development of tourism in Nigeria but we should not also be forced out of business prematurely.
“Now that we have a new tourism minister, I feel it is time government hear us out, for those of us having tourism businesses around the coastal area.
“Two weeks ago, the entire front of our ocean was wiped off because we had high tides, this has been happening for long.
“We need government to wade in and help us pile the ocean to guide against destroying people’s businesses on the ocean. Also, the bad roads must be worked on to encourage investors.
“Some people’s building were taken off by the high tide of water, government must ensure businesses already established are maintained and improved,” she said.
According to Olufemi-Olumide, many people are not willing to embrace the business of tourism because of many challenges ranging from poor power supply, bad roads, high cost of diesel, and multiple taxation among others.
She, however, urged the minister to wade into these problems and ensure tourism businesses begin to thrive during her tenure.
She advised Ade-John to consider holding a tourism stakeholders’ meeting to see how government could help tourism businesses grow in Nigeria.
She further advised the minister to institute funding for tourism practitioners with the Bank of Industry (BOI) and other corporate organisations, who would give out loans at below commercial bank interest rate.
She said this would help the industry to thrive better.
“Those in tourism need access to funding, if people in entertainment can get funding to make movies, why can’t tourism practitioners get such funding to put up beautiful places for people to unwind.
“Tourism in Nigeria is very untapped, especially in Lagos, we are on the atlantic ocean and so the minister should be conscious of these facts,” she said. (NAN)