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NTDC Staff Laud Mbanefo’s Efforts And Programmes

NTDC Staff Laud Mbanefo’s Efforts And Programmes

MEMBERS of staff of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) have described the Director-General of the corporation, Mrs Sally Mbanefo, as God-sent to the nation’s tourism industry and the corporation.

This was following the staff retreat held recently with office shut down for two days, which according to the staff of the corporation, was an eye-opener to the progressive strides of Mbanefo since she resumed office in May 2013.

Many of the staff opined openly Mbanefo and staff jubilatingthat “it is an undeniable fact that it has been long NTDC held a retreat. We’ve never held one for the past seven years. Even, the acting Director Planning, Research and Statistics (PRS), Mrs. Angelina Garba, noted while replying a question on the delay in holding a staff retreat during the two-day retreat that the corporation never had a retreat for the past seven years that she had joined the corporation.

“The retreat also enabled us to know the unimaginable wide gap between the capital coming to the corporation during the past administration and this administration. The current capital is very low.”

It was reliably gathered that staff of the corporation were amazed and full of joy over her love and care for staff.

A staff of the corporation, Abdulahi said: “I really appreciate the Sally Mbanefo-led administration for maximally exploring public/private partnership in the interest of the Nigeria’s tourism industry and the corporation. I will not be exaggerating to say that all NTDC staff now appreciate and commend her unprecedented progressive efforts at practically developing Nigeria’s tourism industry and giving a befitting welfare package for the staff.”

Another staff, Mohammed said: “The welfare package of staff of this corporation was very poor. Wallahi, Mbanefo is a God-sent. May God bless Sally Mbanefo for her good heart and progressive vision for NTDC and Nigeria’s tourism industry. With Mbanefo as the DG of NTDC, Nigeria tourism will witness unprecedented rapid growth, as she is practical. Her achievements are not cosmetic or mere media hype.

“She is like a mother. She listens to all our problems and offers practical solutions and even willing to discomfort herself for staff comfort. For example, Board gave approval for the only car approved by the Ministry of Finance in the budget for her to buy an official car for herself after one year of using her personal car. Yet she donated the budget for the official car for a bus to improve staff welfare, in addition to the four from various private sector institutions who donated four buses at no cost to NTDC for staff welfare.”

The staff of the corporation were happy with her plans for staff welfare and capacity building through private/public partnerships with other agencies, such as SURE-P and National Planning, among others and private sector.

A level 11 officer of the corporation, corroborating many other staff said: “The fact is that we were not well informed about the agenda and efforts of the DG, and the financial status of the corporation until during the retreat when the Finance Department gave us the details of the financial status of the corporation. May God continually bless Mbanefo.”

Mbanefo during the retreat reaffirmed her commitment to promoting domestic tourism in Nigeria and developing one tourist site in each geo-political zones in the country.

She described members of staff of the corporation as the core stakeholders in the Nigeria’s tourism industry, pointing out that neglect of the staff was why the nation’s tourism master plan never worked.

“Why all the tourism master plans we have been having in the country did not work is that they abandoned the staff, and pay no or less attention to the welfare of the staff, that are going to drive the Master Plan project, direct the strategic imperative of the organization,” she decried.

“Staff of the NTDC, the implementers of the corporation’s strategic imperatives, are the core stakeholders in the industry, hence, they must be well equipped and practically made ambassadors of the Nigeria’s tourism industry to drive development in the industry. We must feed the goose that lays the golden egg.

“As a result, capacity building and staff welfare are the priority on my agenda in repositioning the Nigeria’s tourism industry and promoting domestic tourism in the country. And this, I will execute to the letter.”

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NTDC and The Gambia Tourism Board Sign Pact To Develop Regional Tourism

NTDC and The Gambia Tourism Board Sign Pact To Develop Regional Tourism

THE Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) has signed a pact with The Gambia Tourism Board to propel a rapid development and best practices in the Nigeria’s tourism industry.

The NTDC boss, Mrs Sally Mbanefo, while speaking during the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the corporation’s Lagos office, pointed out that the partnership between NTDC and The Gambia Tourism Board is a landmark momentum in the tourism industry in West Africa, as the partnership will also develop and promote a sub-regional tourism brand.

Mbanefo explained: “Nigeria is a catalyst in the development of tourism in West Africa. We have the population, which is a great lubricant in the wheel of developing tourism. We also have the political will to explore the potentialities of the industry. Meanwhile, The Gambia has an excellent track record of best practice in the industry. As a result, partnership with The Gambia will enable us to exchange notes, programmes, and share best practices.

Director-General,  Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) Mrs. Sally Mbanefo, flanked by the Director-General, The Gambian Tourism Board, Mr Benjamin Roberts (left) and Chairman, Gambian Tourism Board, Mr. Bakary Jammeh, holding the signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the Lagos Zonal office of the NTDC in Marina, Lagos.

Director-General, Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) Mrs. Sally Mbanefo, flanked by the Director-General, The Gambian Tourism Board, Mr Benjamin Roberts (left) and Chairman, Gambian Tourism Board, Mr. Bakary Jammeh, holding the signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the Lagos Zonal office of the NTDC in Marina, Lagos.

“Following the partnership, NTDC staff members can go to The Gambia for capacity building and bring back the knowledge to develop Nigeria’s tourism industry. This will also enable our staff members to enlighten the Gambians on the tourism potentials in Nigeria and tell Nigeria’s story correctly to the Gambians, thereby propelling them into visiting Nigeria. The Gambia Tourism Board as well can send their staff to Nigeria for training and also appreciate our tourism assets.

“Our relationship with The Gambia Tourism Board will promote the sub-regional tourism with the standard of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

“It will promote travel and tourism between both countries in the areas of eco-tourism, culture, black heritage, festivals, cuisines and entertainment just to mention a few,” opined Mbanefo.

Mrs Mbanefo, who described The Gambia as the first African country to sign an MOU with promised that the MOU will be actioned, as soon as possible.

The NTDC boss used the opportunity the event offered to sell Nigeria’s domestic tourism to The Gambia Tourism Board members, encouraging them to attend fascinating and crowd-pulling festivals in Nigeria, while reeling out the national domestic calendar to the team.
Her words: “Nigeria is so blessed with innumerable fascinating natural and man-made tourist sites and attention-grabbing cultural festivals. I invite you to attend any of the festivals, and you will be glad you did.”

In his reaction, Director-General of the board,  Mr Benjamin Roberts expressed the interest of The Gambia Tourism Board to work together with NTDC to promote tourism in the two countries.

“The Gambia could be said to be doing well in tourism, yet, there is always room to improve. Therefore, we are here to learn from the immense tourism wealth of Nigeria and contribute to the growth of the industry.

“Note this, we are not just signing the MOU for the fun of it, but we shall ensure that it works out for the benefit of The Gambia and Nigeria. The partnership, we believe, will also help to develop and promote sub-regional brands and experience, as you have said.

“We will work together via co-branding at international events. This will enable the two countries achieve more and use less financial resources. We shall work on achieving one brand for the benefit of the two countries, and also build the capacities of the workers of the NTDC and The Gambia Tourism Board. Hence, we shall come to Nigeria to appreciate Nigerian and tell Nigerians The Gambia story, while your people can also come and tell us Nigeria’s story,” Roberts explained.

The Chairman of The Gambia Tourism Board, Mr Bakary Jammeh, who corroborated the submission of Mr Roberts lauded the keen passion of Mrs Mbanefo at promoting Nigeria’s tourism potentialities, with emphasis on the domestic tourism, which according to him, will make Nigeria a voice in the global tourism industry.

Permanent Secretary of The Gambia Ministry of Trade, Mrs Naffie Barry, said that The Gambia, though advanced in tourism, yet always ready to improve, saying “This partnership will ensure this. It will promote regional integration. Hence, The Gambia can promote herself in Nigerian and Nigeria can also promote herself in The Gambia. We shall implement the partnership. The partnership should not be seen as between The Gambia Tourism Board and Ministry and NTDC, but as between the two countries. The partnership will not only be a blessing to the two countries, but also the whole of Africa.”

Deputy Permanent Secretary of The Gambia Ministry of Trade, Ms Kodu Jabang, added that the partnership will further sell the two countries as the destinations for leisure and investment.

Ms Jabang noted that “we will ensure that all the necessary machineries are put in place at the national level to make the partnership work.”

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