The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has stated that Nigeria could not harness its tourism potentials due to lack of infrastructure and insecurity in the nation.
Speaking on Tuesday at the National Assembly when he appeared to defend the 2017 budget of his Ministry, he lamented that despite the fact that the nation has over 100 world class tourist centres, the nation was still at the ebb of its tourism development.
The Minister’s explanation was a response to worries earlier expressed by a member of Senate Committee on Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, Senator Samuel Anyanwu.
Anyanwu opined that the Minister had the capacity to inject new ideas into tourism component of the nation, such that the agency would generate enough funds against the backdrop of looking for funds cap in hand to execute its core mandate year to year.
He wondered if Nigeria could not take its tourism sector in a manner that it will be like Kenya, South Africa and other countries.
“Honourable Minister, I do know the nature of person you are and that is that you can turn tourism around to the extent it would be like that of Kenya, South Africa and other countries,” Senator Anyanwu noted.
The Minister added that insecurity in Nigeria has further dampened interest of foreign and local investors, noting that the current administration was doing a lot to reposition the industry.
“Distinguished Senators, tourism industry is driven by a secured environment, good roads, power, Human capital and so on, so if all these are not in place, it becomes difficult for the sector to grow,” he maintained.