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Tourism institute DG promises training for tour operators

Training and knowledge based skill has been described as the bedrock for professional conduct in any trade to achieve adequate, efficient and proper service delivery. This was the position of the Director General of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa when he received the executives of the Nigerian Association of Tour Operators (NATOP) at the NIHOTOUR headquarters in Abuja. The NATOP executives were led by the association’s President Hajiya Bilkisu Abdul.

Alhaji Kangiwa, who welcomed the NATOP team, said in line with NIHOTOUR’s mandate, he had been calling on all operators and practitioners in the hospitality, travel and tourism industry to avail themselves of the training services offered by the institute to improve and upgrade their skills for better, greater and safer service delivery in the sector.

He said the visit by NATOP officials to seek for partnership and collaboration for training of its members could not have come at a better time since the institute was being repositioned for better quality service delivery through proper and adequate training and re-training for all professionals and operators in the industry.

The DG said it has been the long desire of NIHOTOUR, as custodians and operators of the hospitality, travel and tourism sector skill council of the country, to have all operators and practitioners in the industry comply with the mandatory provision of knowledge-based skill acquisition via training for better service delivery in line with global best practices. He noted  that it might soon be impossible for quack and ‘all comers’ into the industry to practice without due certification.

Earlier in her remarks, Hajiya Bilkisu said the courtesy visit was meant to seek support of the institute in training members of the association and continuously update them with professional skills and competence to operate optimally as professional tour operators.

Hajiya Bilkisu said as President of NATOP, she was greatly disturbed by the presence of unqualified practitioners in the sector, noting that it was not only killing the industry but bringing the good name of the profession into disrepute.

The NATOP president narrated how unskilled operators in the industry have caused havoc, losses and dented the image of tour operations in recent times.  She pleaded with the DG to avail members of NATOP the opportunity to acquire the necessary skills through the numerous training programmes offered by NIHOTOUR. She said it will help check poor service delivery and halt the unwholesome practices of quacks and unqualified persons who see the industry as a sector for ‘all comers’. The president who came in company of the association’s Secretary General,  Olaniran Owolabi Shaheed, requested for a brief training session for members of the association at their next meeting holding in Abuja to acquaint them with the relevance of training in the proper conduct and discharge of tour operation activities. The NIHOTOUR DG granted the request promises that the institute will make the necessary arrangements for the training soon.


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