Tema Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), Charles Buabin, has called on Ghanaians to patronize various tourism sites in the country as COVID-19 restrictions are eased steadily.
He mentioned the Shai Hills Game Reserve and the Chenku Waterfalls at Shai Osudoku, Dodowa Forest, the Greenwich Meridian Line at Tema Community One, an imaginary line dividing the planet into two equal halves, East and West, as some tourism sites to visit in and around Tema.
Other sites he mentioned include the Sakumo Ramsar Site, a wetland of international importance; the Tema Manhean Fish Landing Beach; the African Ancestral Wall and Fort Vernon both at Prampram; and the Water Sport at Volta Estuary, and other notable recreational and hospitality facilities.
Mr. Buabin told the GNA in Tema as part of the “#ExperienceGhana #ShareGhana” campaign being undertaken by the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, the Ghana Tourism Authority, and other tourism industry players; to encourage Ghanaians to visit tourism sites to ultimately revamp the industry.
The campaign seeks to increase arrivals to 600,000 by 2022 and one million by the end of 2024 with a West African Regional Target aimed at increasing arrivals from 180,000 presently, to 400,000 by 2024.
Mr. Buabin noted that the tourism sector was the hardest hit by the outbreak of COVID-19 and brought national and global tourism to a standstill.
He said even though the sector was grounded temporarily with a rapid drop in demand and a surge in job losses as a result of the direct bearing that COVID-19 preventive restrictions posed, the situation was steadily picking up at all levels.
He said, to make up for the gap that had arisen as a result of the pandemic, the Ministry of Tourism had made it a policy to re-launch domestic tourism and to promote it aggressively for Ghanaians to patronize tourism sites and hospitality facilities.
He, therefore, reiterated the call for the public to patronize some notable tourism sites in Tema and its environs, and the country as a whole to not only enhance tourism but make Ghana the preferred tourist destination.
“Every country that has a strong tourism sector has to also be a formidable but complementary domestic tourism sector, and that is what the Ministry and the Authority are working at achieving,” he stated.
He noted that Ghana had a lot to offer and most Ghanaians did not exactly know the country so well, and as part of the recovery plan from the pandemic, it was needed to stimulate demand for the tourism sector, make it more viable and rebuild destinations by encouraging visits.
Mr. Buabin said, “We are of the view that national cohesion can be enhanced and achieved when a lot more travels go on in addition to feeding the hotels with a constant source of occupancy for people to become more conversant with the country”.