Federal government has inaugurated the Planning Committee of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Global Conference with the minister of Information and Culture Alhaji Lai Mohammed as chairman.
Nigeria was given the hosting right for this inaugural edition of the Global Conference on ‘Linking Tourism, Culture and the Creative Industries: Pathways to Recovery and Inclusive Development’, during the 64th meeting of the UNWTO Commission for Africa in Cape Verde in 2021.
Also, during his recent visit to the headquarters of the UNWTO in Madrid, Spain, President Muhammadu Buhari promised that Nigeria would host a world-class conference, and assured all participants of a safe and secure environment as well as adequate facilities.
Mohammed, in his address at the inauguration of the committee for the 1ST UNWTO Global Conference in Abuja yesterday stressed that the Committee must live up to that billing schedule to be held at the National Theatre Complex, Iganmu, Lagos, from November 14th to 16th, 2022.
On why Nigeria is hosting the Global Conference, he said “countries bid to host events such as this because of its socio-economic benefits, hence our hosting of this conference provides an opportunity to, among others.”
The minister said the Conference would showcase Nigeria’s tourism, culture and creative assets.
He said it would also project Nigeria’s image as a safe and desirable destination for leisure and business.
“Consolidate on our relationship with the UNWTO and its member states;
“Highlight the restart of travel and tourism in a safe and seamless manner after the unprecedented impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which resulted in a near collapse of the sector.
“Interact and exchange ideas and best practices with key industry players.
“Generate foreign exchange and create direct and indirect jobs; and create opportunities for training of public and private sector tourism officials.”
Mohammed said the National Theatre was currently undergoing massive refurbishment for the first time since it was commissioned some 46 years ago.
Apart from the rehabilitation of the building, he said four hubs for fashion, movie, music and ICT are being built within the National Theatre complex.
“There is therefore no better opportunity for us to showcase the renewal of the iconic National Theatre, which was conceived as a grand hub for the arts, than during the hosting of this global event,” he said.
Also, some of the objectives of the conference according to him include, “Gathering of top-notch panelists and stakeholders to discuss the linkages between tourism, culture and the creative industries;
Members of the planning committee include the permanent secretary, FMIC, Dr. Ifeoma Anyanwutaku deputy chair; Representative of the Central Bank of Nigeria; Representative of Lagos State; Representative of Bankers’ Committee; Representative of Cappa & D’Alberto; Hon. Abike Dabiri Erewa – executive chairman, Nigerian Diaspora Commission; Ambassador Demola Seriki – Nigeria’s Ambassador to Spain; Ambassador Nasir Aminu – Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Mr. Segun Adeyemi – special assistant to the President, Office of the Minister of Information and Culture; Mr. Williams Adeleye – special assistant to the President, Office of the Minister of Information and Culture.
Others are Mr. Bayo Omoboriowo, personal Photographer to Mr. President; Dr. Mufutau Kayode – DFA, FMIC; Mr. Friday Anumba – NTDC; Dr. Taiwo Famigbiyele – NIHOTOUR; Mr. Sam Agbi – NCAC; Mr. Yanusa Mohammed – National Theatre; Mrs. Florence Ogar-Moddey – Nigeria Customs Service; Mr. Karim Idris – Nigerian Immigration Service; Alli Baba; Mrs. Ronke Kuye – SANEF; Mrs. Ngozi Nzoka – NESG; Ms. Dorothy Duruaku – Deputy Director Overseeing International Tourism Promotion and Cooperation, FMIC; Mrs. Ugochi Akudo-Nwosu – deputy director Overseeing Entertainment and Creative Services, FMIC.