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The Governor of Ekiti State, Biodun Oyebanji has indicated his government’s willingness to partner with the Federal Ministry of Tourism to explore and develop the untapped tourism opportunities in the state.

Governor Oyebanji highlighted that the collaboration’s objective is to establish the state as a top-tier tourism destination nationwide.

The Governor disclosed this on Monday during the 6th edition of Hike Ekiti Mountain safari which took place at Abanijorin Mountain and cave, in Iyin- Ekiti.

The event saw the presence of notable figures including the Minister of Tourism, Mrs. Lola Ade-John, Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Chief (Mrs) Monisade Afuye, Speaker of the Ekiti State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Adeoye Aribasoye, and the Director General of NIHOTOUR, Alhaji Nura Kangiwa, among others.

Governor Oyebanji emphasized that a well-developed tourism sector has the potential to transform the economy and enhance the state’s revenue. He highlighted the state’s intention to utilize tourism as a means to attract investments, generate employment opportunities, stimulate the local economy, and advance the shared prosperity goals of his administration.

The Governor conveyed his appreciation to the Minister for her visit and dedication to tourism advancement in Nigeria. He remarked that her dedication reflects the caliber of individuals collaborating with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to fulfill the President’s revitalized hope agenda.

He revealed that he has charged the state Bureau of Tourism Development to come up with the state’s tourism development master-plan in alignment with the Federal Ministry of Tourism vision to create an enabling environment for the people to prosper.

“I’m so excited that finally, we are giving life to this programme. It started six years ago and I know and am convinced that if we are going to drive our shared prosperity agenda in Ekiti state, tourism is a critical factor in ensuring that we provide job, create wealth and also emplaced a healthy and productive society.

“As a government, we have charged the bureau of tourism development to create a desirable tourism masterplan for the state, because that is what is going to drive our intervention in the tourism sector and we will further collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Tourism by ensuring that we align our own plan with their own so that together we can create an enabling environment for our people to prosper”. The Governor asserted.

Earlier in her remarks, the Minister of Tourism, Mrs. Lola Ade-John, who said the purpose of her visit was to encourage and promote the eco-tourism sector of the state, lauded Governor Oyebanji’s commitment to tourism development, especially the creation of a Bureau of tourism.

She maintained that Governor Oyebanji’s determination to prioritize tourism aligns with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s led federal government’s resolve to boost the nation’s economy through tourism development.

The Minister, who maintained that collaboration among government entities, tourism agencies, business and communities global is crucial for promoting sustainable tourism in the state, assured the Governor that her ministry would continue to support the state government to explore and tap into various beautiful tourist sites in the state in order to preserve the natural heritage for future generations.

She urged the participants to use the opportunity to contribute to the development of tourism in the state as she acknowledged that the future of Ekiti tourism looks promising .

” Collaboration among government entities, tourism agencies, business and communities global is crucial for promoting sustainable tourism in Ekiti state and beyond and as affirmed by the Governor, he is very passionate about tourism and he intends on making tourism in the state as enviable and as an example to other state in Nigeria “. The Minister said.

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