By Jimoh Babatunde
The new Director General of the National Institute of Hospitality and Tourism, NIHOTOUR, Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa, has reiterated the place that the workforce occupies in the development of tourism in the country.
Speaking about what he plans to do to reposition the training institute, Kangiwa said: “No amount of investment in infrastructure or in expanding tourism capacity in Nigeria will be successful unless the necessary manpower in the required quantity and in the required levels of knowledge and skills are provided to manage the sector.
“I want my tenure at NIHOTOUR to mark a milestone in the development of the Nigerian tourism sector, especially in the training and retraining of labor for the industry.
“My commitment to NIHOTOUR fulfilling its mandate in this regard remains unwavering.”
He added that he wants to overcome the dreams of the founding fathers of the institute.
“The founding fathers established NIHOTOUR to provide skills competency, technical refresher programs, and knowledge-based career education in the hotel and tourism industry in Nigeria and West Africa.
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“It’s like Utalii Colleg, Kenya, which supplies East Africa. I will not rest on my oars until I can accomplish this for the Institute, ”he said.
The tourism manager said the first task before him is to improve the facilities on his campuses to fulfill his mandates.
“We are working to reform the training facilities at all of our training campuses to make NIHOTOUR vibrant and responsive to new challenges.
“We are also working on programs and modalities for the training and empowerment of rural women and youth on community participation in the tourist destination and self-employment.
“We believe that until Nigerian tourism host communities buy and actively participate in the inbound and inbound tourism value chain, there will be little or no economic multiplier effect of tourism on the lives of Nigerians.
“I am also working to make NIHOTOUR visible. Not much is known about NIHOTOUR even though it has been around for over 26 years.
“This, perhaps, is the reason why we do not have enough enrollment in our various courses. By the time my term ends, NIHOTOUR would have become a household name, ”added Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa.