NATOP to honour Andrew Okungbowa, others at 2023 AGM in Ekiti
Ekiti tourism is set for global attention as the Nigeria Association of Tour Operators (NATOP) heads to the state for its Tourism Conference, Annual General Meeting and Awards/dinner night.
This is as the Travel and Tourism Editor, New Telegraph Newspaper, Andrew Iro Okungbowa, is to be bestowed with an Award of Excellence, alongside others by NATOP.
The conference is slated to hold between July 13 and 16 in Ado Ekiti, the state capital. The theme for the three days conference, which will climax with a tour of some of the state’s tourist attractions, is, Tourism and Green Investment in Nigeria.
According to the schedule of the event, delegates are expected to arrive on July 13; Conference/Investment Summit holds on July 14 at Adetiloye Hall, Trade Fair Complex, Ado Ekiti; City tour of Ado Ekiti and environs is slated for July 15; followed by AwardS and Dinner Night while departure of delegates is slated for July 16.
The executives of the association, led by its National President, Mrs. Ime Udo, had last month met with the state Governor, Biodun Oyebanji and his team, where the hosting right was perfected, with the governor pledging a befitting hosting of the association and other stakeholders that are expected to attend the three days event.
The governor noted the commitment of the government to the development and promotion of the state’s tourism, disclosing plan to create the Bureau of Tourism from the present Ministry of Arts, Culture, and Tourism, for effective operations and coordination of tourism development in the state. Udo pledged the partnership of NATOP with the state government in developing its tourism, noting that the forthcoming tour- ism conference and AGM, will be a starting point of the collaboration pact.
According to her, “NATOP push for Ekiti State for the hosting of the 2023 AGM is just a way to promote investment opportunities for Ekiti State. It is also an avenue to showcase Ekiti State tourism potentials and also promote domestic tourism as a whole in Nigeria. ‘‘Ekiti State is ripe for ecotourism, wellness and active tourism, not forgetting the cultural heritage.”
Meanwhile, Okungbowa, who is also the News Editor, Saturday Telegraph, has been listed as one of the stakeholders to be honoured at the award and dinner night, which is slated to hold on July 15. He would be honoured with the Award of Excellency for his various contributions to the development of NATOP and tourism in the country.
NATOP in its award letter to Okungbowa, signed by Udo, stated; ‘‘As part of our activities lined up for our upcoming AGM and Tourism/ Investment summit is a dinner and award night where we recognise persons who have distinguished themselves and who have made significant contributions to the growth of the tourism sector in Nigeria.
‘‘We are immensely grateful for the tireless efforts and invaluable support you have provided to our association and indeed the industry at large. Your dedication and vision has played a pivotal role in promoting tourism, fostering cultural exchange, and boosting our nation’s economy. ‘‘Considering your outstanding achievements and remarkable contributions, we have chosen to present you with an Award of Excellence for your exceptional accomplishments in the Tourism sector.
This award serves as a symbol of our deep appreciation for your relentless commitment to excellence and innovation, as well as your unwavering support towards our association’s mission.’’