By Jimin Geoffrey
Governor Samuel Ortom has charged Benue Youth to enrol for hospitality and tourism management courses at the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, NIHOTOUR, Makurdi Campus to get trained in skills that will improve their economy.
The Governor who made the call today while commissioning the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, Makurdi Campus said those with degrees and higher degrees could also enrol and acquire skills that would provide jobs for them and even others.
He stated that government would liaise with the Bank of Industry to provide loans to graduands of the institute at five percent interest rate in order to start up their businesses, stressing that beneficiaries of his administration’s amnesty programme who enrol for the various programmes would be given scholarship as a form of encouragement.
Governor Ortom stated that hospitality and tourism businesses are the driving forces behind the development of most advanced economies in the world, pointing out that as the revenue from oil was gradually diminishing, there was need to look elsewhere for sustenance.
He noted that his administration had created a one-stop desk for potential investors to come and take advantage of the vast opportunities that exist in both the hospitality and tourism sub-sectors in the state.
According to him, with the establishment of the Makurdi Campus of the institute, Benue and other States of the North Central Zone would benefit immensely from the development of manpower in hospitality and tourism management.
Dr. Taiwo Famogbiyele, Director of General Studies and representative of the acting Director General of NIHOTOUR, Dr. Momoh Kabir, who decried the dearth of skilled persons in the society said the birth of the institute in the North Central would enable youth acquire skills that meet the requirements of employers.
Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Rt. Hon. Ngunan Adingi said the establishment of NIHOTOUR would not only bring about changes in the hospitality and tourism landscape in the state but also afford unemployed youth the opportunity to be gainfully employed especially in these times of economic challenges.