A tourism consultant, Alhaji Yahaya Ndu, has called on operators in the tourism sector to strengthen existing security apparatus not just during festive seasons but as a continuous exercise.
Ndu who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja, said that this was necessary in order to avert casualties at all times.
He said that with festive season that has come and gone there was still a great need for increased vigilance in the sector as hotels, shopping centres, public places and entertainment spots were still busy.
“As holiday makers from around the country and world flocked to different cities and towns during the festive season, ordinary crime management and prevention measures were no longer sufficient.
“While people in the festive spirit often let down their guards as they finally relax after a long year, criminals also head to these spots to take advantage of the extra opportunities.
“Parents should look after their children who in the excitement of festivities tend to be very vulnerable to all sorts of child related crimes,” he advised.
Ndu therefore called upon owners of shops and entertainment places to be vigilant and ensure adequate security in these places.
“Families visited many of the relaxation sports in droves and people want to feel that they can visit such public places in safety with their loved ones. This is why there must be additional security measures and we cannot simply rely on the regular security measures as they are,” he said.
Ndu noted that providing a conducive atmosphere without compromising safety and security was the biggest challenge that operators of the sector faced today.
“Achieving these goals requires robust plans that include guest education about safety and security issues.”
According to him, today tourism is the world’s most important business, the biggest global export earner and also a catalyst for growth in the sector.
He said that the industry accounted for substantial revenue and could stimulate greater investment in critical infrastructure which ultimately could contribute to improved standard of living of the people.
“Tourism is highly sensitive to perceptions of danger and lack of safety and security. It is in this context that lack of safety, security and incidences of crime represent a more serious threat to travel and tourism.
“All stakeholders must be involved in ensuring tourism security by combating crime and protecting residents and visitors as well as destinations’ reputations,” he said. NAN

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