The Director General of the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), Alhaji Nura S Kangiwa has stressed the importance of training and knowledge-based skills as the bedrock for professional conduct of any given trade to achieve adequate, efficient and proper service delivery.

Alhaji Kangiwa who stated this when officials of the Nigerian Association of Tour Operators (NATOP) led by its President, Hajiya Bilqiz Abdul paid him a courtesy visit in his Abuja office and headquarters of the Institute said NIHOTOUR has in line with its mandate, been calling on all operators and practitioners in the Hospitality, Travel and Tourism industry to avail themselves of the training services offered by the Institute in order to improve and upgrade their skills for better, greater and safer service delivery in the sector.

He said the visit by NATOP officials to seek for partnership and collaboration for training of its members couldn’t have come at a better time than now when the Institute is been repositioned for better quality service delivery through proper and adequate training and re-training for all professionals and operators in the industry.

The Director General said it has been the long desire of NIHOTOUR as custodians and operators of the Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Sector Skill Council of the country to have all operators and practitioners in the industry comply with the mandatory provision of knowledge-based skill acquisition via training for better service delivery in line with global best practices, noting that it might soon be impossible for quack and ‘all comers’ into the industry to practice without due certification.

Earlier in her remarks, Hajiya Bilqiz said the courtesy visit was meant to seek support of the Institute in training members of the Association and continuously update them with professional skills and competence to operate optimally as professional tour operators.

Hajiya Bilqiz said as President of NATOP, she is greatly disturbed by the presence of unqualified practitioners in the sector, noting that it is not only killing the industry but bringing the good name of the profession into disrepute.

The NATOP President who narrated how unskilled operators in the industry have caused havoc, losses and dented image for tour operations in recent times, pleaded with the Director General to avail members of her Association the opportunity to acquire the necessary skills through the numerous training programmes offered by NIHOTOUR to check poor service delivery and halt the unwholesome practices of quacks and unqualified persons who see the industry as a sector for ‘all comers’. The President who came in company of the Association’s Secretary General, Mr. Olaniran Owolabi Shaheed, appealed for a brief training session for members of the Association at their next meeting holding in Abuja to acquaint them of the relevance of training in the proper conduct and discharge of tour operation activities which was gladly granted by the Director General of NIHOTOUR as a mark for the start of training activities of members of NATOP by the Institute in due time to come.

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