Security of lives, Properties my primary concern – Lalong

Plateau state Governor Simon Lalong on Friday said the security of lives and properties in an environment of peace and peaceful coexistence as a primary concern of his administration .

Lalong made this known while speaking at the opening ceremony of the first ever tourism conference on unlocking the VAST POTENTIALS OF TOURISM AS A financing option for sustainable socioeconomic development in Jos .

He said ” It is the prop upon which we desire to promote the attainment of a sustainable environment. Where anarchy and chaos remain the order of the day, no meaningful development can be attained, much less the creation of Tourism destinations for recreation. Your professional contributions at this conference will therefore be enhanced essentially through the guarantee of Peace and Security.

“We are indeed very proud as a state to host today’s conference considering our comparative advantage over every other state in Nigeria in terms of our tourism endowments.

” It is quite significant that we are hosting this conference at a time that there is the urgent need for an inclusive and participatory tourism development roadmap, involving the Communities through their Development Associations, the Local Government Councils, the State Government, the Private Sector and all critical stakeholders in the tourism value chain, all of whose respective roles in developing the state’s tourism sector cannot be overemphasized.”

” This conference is also significant to developing our tourism endowments because it can stimulate understanding and support efforts toward building a culture of peace that is very critical in the development process. It is instructive to note that mobilizing all stakeholders in this manner to work together will culminate in making tourism a formidable catalyst for positive change!”

” This event is an open attestation of the Tourism credentials of Plateau State, and even a greater affirmation of the commitment of our Rescue Administration to the development of Tourism in the State. You will recall that on assumption of office about three and a half years ago, my administration unveiled a Five Policy Thrust Governance Intervention Agenda. The first of this thrust is Peace, Security and Good Governance and the fifth is the provision of critical Physical Infrastructure and the development of a sustainable environment. ”

“. Further to this and considering the immense potentials that Plateau State possesses, and given the advantage of an all-year-round clement weather, Government has seen the need to provide critical infrastructure in its urban governance and rural transformation Agenda. The reason for this is simply to ensure that facilities are available across the state to make life easier for the various communities in the state, thereby, creating a visitor-friendly community throughout the state.

” The Plateau State Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Hospitality, together with all her subordinate Agencies have in the last two years made concerted efforts in ensuring that through Annual Cultural and Entertainment events, they have helped to keep Plateau State in the Tourism Calendar of tourism events in the country. The Plateau State Carnival, a Road Show and Music Fiesta, are experiencing and receiving national recognition and I can assure you it will soon rival the Calabar Carnival and “CarniRivs”. ”

Plateau State is also on record to have hosted the Boat Sports Carnival or Regatta, held last year and we will soon be looking forward to expanding on this potential in Aqua-Sports. The Mountain Hiking, High Altitude Sports Training, Bird Watching and others alike, which all fall within the Sports and Eco-Tourism Sectors, are gaining relevance by the day and we are providing an environment that creates a conducive atmosphere for travel and tours to thrive, in addition to resuscitation efforts being put in place in our already established Tourist sites within the state.”

” Let me make it abundantly clear that no responsible Government can afford to let the economic potentials of the Tourism and Travel Industry to remain fallow, and this underscores the new focus of our Government. For a Sector that is one of the World’s largest industries, with global economic contribution of about 8.27 trillion USD in 2017; representing almost 10% of Global GDP and supporting over 277 million jobs, which translates to one (1) job out of eleven (11) employments worldwide, Tourism and Travels remain a Sector that must be given attention.”

“In November 2017, as stated earlier, I had the opportunity of leading a delegation from the State to the World Travel Market in Excel London, and it provided me the opportunity of seeing the potential of the Travel Market to connect attendees and network of Tour Practitioners, key industry buyers and influencers for the purpose of Tourism Destination Marketing.”

“I am envisaging that we can localize this experience using the Public/Private sector Partnership, (PPP) strategy to create a convergence for the demand and supply chain in the Tourism and Travels Sectors. Pursuant to this, government has strategically appointed members to the Board of the Plateau State Tourism Corporation in London for the UK and Europe (Who is already considering the establishment of a One-Stop-Tourism-Shop in London to cater for would-be investors to the state) and in the United States for the Americas. ”

“Therefore, as you brainstorm on the theme of the conference, I will be expecting the exercise to come out with far reaching resolutions that will help us as a Government, to find the master key that will unlock the vast potentials inherent in tourism as a financing option that will accelerate the socioeconomic development of our State. Our desire also, is so you can highlight the position of Plateau State, as one of the most peaceful and unique destinations for Tourism in Nigeria.”

“I am hoping that we will not only pay lip service to this but will identify areas of collaboration and engage experts in marketing the state as the Tourism Investment Destination of Nigeria, which will help expose Plateau State to the outside world, for the mutually benefiting economic advantage it will avail all.”

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