Posts tagged as: tourism

New Narok Stadium Offers Hope for Sports Tourism

By Elias Makori

As largely expected, the Confederation of African Football (Caf) at the weekend handed Morocco hosting rights for next year’s Africa Nations Championships (Chan) after stripping unprepared Kenya the onus.

The confederation’s argument was that Kenya was politically, and in terms of infrastructure, unprepared to host this second-tier tournament that counts for little, save for player exposure.

Subsequently, Kenya’s home-based players will miss the opportunity to strut their stuff in front of continental television cameras with the hope of attracting the eye of talent scouts.

As usual, it was a mad, last-minute rush to ready stadiums to beat Caf’s deadline.

Eldoret’s Kipchoge Keino Stadium, Meru’s Moi Kinoru Stadium along with the Machakos and Nyayo National Stadium were considered far from ready for the tournament, traditionally hosted in January, with renovation works lagging way behind schedule.

Football Kenya Federation is now rallying to have the regional Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup in Kenya next month.

Nakuru, Kisumu and, possibly, Mombasa will most probably host matches of the annual East and Central Africa tournament, Africa’s oldest regional competition.

Bizarrely, Narok hasn’t been considered for the annual tournament, and wasn’t even in the FKF radar for the aborted Chan competition. Yet the Narok County Stadium is one of the hidden treasures of Kenyan sport that’s yet to be exploited, although AFC Leopards have already wisely adopted it as their temporary home ground.

The Narok stadium was commissioned in 2012 through the then Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Ministry of Local Government, following a request from the local authorities.

Some Sh313.6 million was allocated to the project whose first phase — which has been completed – saw construction of the playing field, running track and VIP terraces, with an initial capacity of 5,000 people. The second phase will include more terraces, a swimming pool, basketball courts along with a lower boundary wall and landscaping.

Located just 80 kilometres from the world-famous Masai Mara Game Reserve, the Narok stadium holds huge potential for Kenyan sports tourism.

Benson Kariuki, an experienced sports administrator, who is currently managing the stadium on behalf of the Narok County Government, is already working on programmes that will see the stadium play a pivotal role in cashing in on the splendour of the Mara.

“It’s surprising that we were not considered to be one of the Chan venues, yet what we have developed here can easily gain approval to host such a tournament, especially with the completion of the second phase of the project and the vantage point we hold next to the Masai Mara,” Kariuki wondered when I happened by the stadium for a brief tour last week.

What comes to mind, for instance, is a “Mara Sevens” rugby tournament where world class teams could camp at the five star hotels and lodges in the Mara and drive down for their matches at the stadium during the long wildebeest migration seasons.

Or indeed an invitational “Mara Cup” football to be organized on a similar basis. The ministries of Sport and Tourism really need to think outside the box and cash in on new attractions and revenue streams rather than over-rely on traditional assets.

It’s tedious to continuously harp on “fauna and flora,” “game drives,” the “big five” and “sandy beaches” while we can be innovative and attract some fresh offerings while still cashing in on our traditional touristic vantage points.

Narok is a treasure and thanks to specific attention that Governor Samuel Kuntai Ole Tunai’s county government continues to place on sport, something positive will most certainly stem out of Kenya’s perennially tainted sports management.

Indeed, as I’ve previously pointed out before, county governments will be pivotal in helping develop Kenya’s sports potential and boost sports funding as we cannot continue relying on an over-burdened national exchequer.

It would be awesome to have youthful Governor Stephen arap Sang’s Nandi County Government complete works at the Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Kapsabet, while it’s reassuring to see steady progress at the Eldoret stadium, also named after the Olympic legend, under the supervision of Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago.

For years, we’ve been told about money being set aside by the Kisii County Government for the refurbishment of Gusii Stadium, and now that Governor James Ongwae is through for another term, such talk should translate into action.

Ditto Nyamira County where Governor John Nyagarama broke ground for a county stadium in his first term, but to date, it’s been just that: ground-breaking.

In Mombasa, Governor Ali Hassan Joho’s decision to put up several turf pitches, including at the famous “Uwanja wa Mbuzi,” is a step in the right direction, as is Governor Alex Tolgos’ allocation of funds for refurbishment of the historic Kamariny Stadium in Iten, a town famous for distance running training and paragliding.

In drawing up and approving their budgets, county executives and assemblies should not treat sport as a fringe concern, but rather as an additional revenue stream.

Sports is too important to be left to national government alone.

Tourism Arrivals Up 7% in 2 Months

By Gadiosa Lamtey

The number of tourists increased by 7 per cent between July and August, Tanzania National Parks director general Allan Kijazi has said.

He told the third edition of Swahili International Tourism Export (Site) yesterday that the revenue of Sh75 billion was collected, up from the target of Sh70 billion. “We hope by end of this year the number of tourists will as a vigorous promotion has been undertaken by the Tanzania Tourists Board,” Dr Kijazi said.

The target was to get 200,000 tourists but more of them were hosted.

Meanwhile, Southern Sun Hotel management plans to expand the conference rooms to meet customer demand.

Sales manager Jimmy Mwagumba said the hotel industry needed modern technologies such as teleconference and Skype. “Having new technologies is vital to improve our services and compete,” he said. Southern Sun Hotel is participating in Site for the first time. “However, the event is important because it’s part of meeting with potential customers and other stakeholders to exchange ideas. “More than 30 countries across the world are taking part in the expo, which attracted some 150 exhibitors. (Gadiosa Lamtey)

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Africa:MEC Alan Winde Congratulates Cape Town International Airport On Being Awarded Africa’s Best Airport

press release

Cape Town International Airport is Africa’s best airport

Cape Town International Airport has been recognised as Africa’s best.

Cape Town International Airport won the award for Africa’s leading airport at the 2017 World Travel Awards Africa gala ceremony in Rwanda last night (10 October 2017).

Alan Winde, MEC of Economic Opportunities, congratulated CTIA on the award, which is voted for by the tourism industry and consumers.

“I would like to commend Deon Cloete and his team at Cape Town International Airport for flying South Africa’s flag high at these awards, once again being named as the continent’s best airport. Through our Cape Town Air Access partnership, we have added ten new direct routes and secured 11 expansions since the launch of our Project Khulisa growth strategy. We’ve seen an increase of 27% in international air arrivals in the past year. Improving air access has played a major role in driving this increase.”

In a statement, Deon Cloete, CTIA general manager, said: “Cape Town International Airport is delighted to have received this accolade as it recognises the commitment to excellence which has been shown by the whole of Airports Company South Africa and this particular airport in the last twelve months.

‘All indications are that we can expect a bumper peak season in Cape Town. The team is geared to do their bit to welcome all of our visitors.”

Cloete said October marked the start of the peak season when seasonal carriers launched their summer schedules. CTIA has already welcomed Edelweiss which connects Cape Town to Zurich, Condor which connects the city to Frankfurt and soon Lufthansa will start operating its Munich to Cape Town frequency.

For media queries, kindly contact:

Bronwynne Jooste

Spokesperson: Alan Winde, MEC of Economic Opportunities

Responsible for Tourism, Economic Development and Agriculture

Tel: 021 483 3550

Cell: 060 970 4301

Email: bronwynne.jooste@westerncape.gov.za

Province:

Western Cape

Issued by: Western Cape Economic Development and Tourism

South Africa

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Mourners Pay Tribute to PS Mariam El Maawy

By Ouma Wanzala

Government officials described the late Public Works Principal Secretary Mariam El Maawy as a devoted public servant.

Defence Cabinet Secretary Raychelle Omamo said her death is a blow for the nation.

“She was a humble but courageous person; more so while discharging her duties.

“In Mariam, there was so much beauty, humility, gentleness, and so much love,” she said on Saturday in Lavington where mourners had gathered to commemorate her life.

ATTACK

Maawy was buried at Lang’ata Muslim cemetery.

The PS died in a South African hospital on Wednesday while undergoing treatment for injuries sustained during an Al-Shabaab attack at Milihoi on the Lamu-Mpeketoni road on July 13.

Six others died in the incident.

HUMBLE

Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed said she had lost a sister and confidant.

“She was also a strong, effective, selfless, driven and amazing leader,” Ms Mohamed said.

Leila El Maawy, the late PS’ daughter, said she had not only lost a parent, but also a mentor and a friend who had sacrificed so much for the well-being of her family.

Other Cabinet secretaries present were Jacob Kaimenyi (Lands), Dan Kazungu (Mining) and Najib Balala (Tourism), among others.

Kenya

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Tourist Sites to Be Improved to Generate More Revenues

By Diane Uwimana

On the occasion of the World Tourism Day, celebrated yearly on 27 September, Burundian artists complain about the lack of tourists to visit attractive sites and buy their works.

Sculptors and artists doing their activities at the Burundi national museum (Musée Vivant) complain about the lack of customers. “We increase artistic productions but few customers come to buy them. The number of tourists has significantly reduced”, says Wenceslas Mashingano, a sculptor.

He says the number of tourists reduced following the crisis that erupted in 2015 when Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza announced he would run for a third term in office.

He also says the Burundi national museum is not known by many tourists. “There is a need to advertise the museum to attract more tourists. On the contrary, sellers of our products in Bujumbura city center have more customers than us”, he says. Jean Bosco, another sculptor says he could easily earn BIF 100 thousand before the 2015 crisis but can now spend a whole day without any customer.

“We have no choice but to continue producing our works. We believe that the current politico-security situation may change at any moment what can increase the number of tourists”, says Hitimana. He also says sculptors and other artists prefer to export their products to the neighboring countries these days. “Our products are very much appreciated in the region. We, therefore, take advantage of the exhibition organized to get fare”, he says.

Venant Igirukwishaka, Head of Burundi National Museum, says there is a need to advertise the latter in order to promote its species and attract more tourists as it is one of the most Burundi attractive sites. “We receive few tourists since 2015. The best way to make it widely known is to advertise it”, he says. The museum contains crocodiles, snakes, a leopard, chimpanzees, some birds, natural and traditional trees, a royal palace where traditional tools used by Burundians were kept.

Marie Inès Mpundu, Chairperson of Hotels and Tourism sector in Burundi (HTB), says there are 126 touristic sites in the country among which 20 sites are the most visited. “Tourism sector is not developed in Burundi like in other countries of the region even if it generates revenues. Hotels and restaurants are not well managed. Attractive sites are far from the headquarters of provinces and tourists hardly get there”, she says, adding that the tourism sector mainly needs support and advertisement.

Sadiki Elie, an archeologist believes that the attractive sites should be rehabilitated through the employment of young people. “The youth may contribute to the promotion of tourist sites by collecting other traditional tools and some animals that would attract more tourists”, he says.

The World Tourism Day has been nationally celebrated in Karusi central province on the theme: “Sustainable tourism: A tool to serve people”

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All Eyes on Berlin Marathon

By Brian Yonga

Hundreds of fans will be able to follow Sunday’s potentially record-breaking BMW Berlin Marathon live as the Bank of Africa’s World Marathon Majors viewing party shifts to Eldoret.

The BOA “Viewerthons” are a series of events where the bank invites elite and upcoming athletes along with the local community to follow the World Marathon Majors races from Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York while being taken through education programmes.

Former world marathon record holder Wilson Kipsang, Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge and Berlin Marathon champion Kenenisa Bekele will all be seeking to break the world record in the German capital.

Kenyan Dennis Kimetto set a world marathon record of two hours, two minutes and 57 seconds during the 2014 edition.

Sunday’s Eldoret viewing, which is in its third year running, will provide budding and seasoned athletes an opportunity to receive financial advice, information on taxation, media training and professional advice on anti-doping for free.

Bank of Africa have partnered with Isuzu East Africa, partners of Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge.

“We have always been proud to be associated with the athletes in Kenya who have flown the Kenyan flag high for years. The viewing events not only bring together family, friends and relatives to watch the showdown live on a more enhanced television screen but have also been key in promoting financial literacy among these athletic communities,” said Bank of Africa’s head of marketing, Jimmi Wanjohi.

In addition to sponsoring the marathon viewing parties, BOA offers a distinctive package for sportsmen and women through its ‘Mwanariadha Account’ whose features and benefits further contribute to their financial goals as athletes.

Isuzu East Africa last week signed a two-year, Sh15 million partnership with Kipchoge which includes giving the Olympic champion an Isuzu pick-up vehicle per personal and professional use.

Kipsang will, meanwhile, also be promoting the Brand Kenya initiative in Berlin through the Kenya Tourism Board.

Prague Marathon champion and course record holder Valery Aiyabei (personal best 2:21:57) and Gladys Cherono (2:19:25), winner of the 2015 BMW Berlin Marathon, will represent Kenya in the women’s race on Sunday.

Kenya

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Tanzania: MP Wants Mining Company to Pay District U.S.$190 Million

Photo: Daily Monitor

Member of Parliament for Msalala, Ezekiel Maige

By By Mnaku Mbani

Member of Parliament for Msalala, Ezekiel Maige (CCM) wants the Bulyanhulu Gold Mine to pay Msalala District Council a total of Sh425 billion in unpaid service levy.

Speaking to the Citizen in a telephone interview on Tueday, September 19, Mr Maige said the amount is in accordance with the estimates made by the Presidential Committee on minerals, headed by Prof Nehemiah Osoro.

“The company started to pay the service levy in 2015 using an old formula of $200,000 flat rate per year instead of 0.3 per cent of the gross revenue of the company,” he said.

He said the recent report which indicates that Acacia paid $11 million to Msalala District Council was not true. He said he was not aware when the amount was paid.

The former minister for Tourism said since the company started its operation in 1998, the economic dividends gained from mining activities were not equivalent of what was harvested.

“My people are among of the victims of bad investment policies that have been implemented in Tanzania over the last two decades,” he said.

Mr Maige is in the view that the existence of the gold mine at the district has not benefited the people as many of them were evicted from their areas without proper compensation.

It is estimated that about 200,000 people were removed from the current Bulyanhulu Mine site in 1998 without compensation.

He said seven in ten people in Msalala District were happy by the decision of the government to revisit gold business transactions in Tanzania and only three out of ten are unhappy with the decision.

He said even employment at the mining areas did not consider local residents and all of their goods and services needs were outsourced outside the district.

Tanzania

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Rwanda: New Initiative to Support Women in Tourism Business

By Peterson Tumwebaze

More than 30 business women in tourism and hospitality were tipped on new skills to become profitable and competitive.

The training conducted under the flagship of the International Trade Centre (ITC) seeks to boost skills of the women in the tourism industry to be able to enhance service delivery.

The project code named “East Africa: Empowering Women in Trade” seeks to link women entrepreneurs to the international market, according to Diane Sayinzoga, the Head of SEZs and Export at Rwanda Development Board.

It also aims at enabling women entrepreneurs working in selected sectors in East Africa to trade by increasing the value of their international business transactions, thus contributing to the goal of raising incomes, and creating jobs along the value chain.

The project is an opportunity for women to meet with international counterparts, share knowledge and expertise on how to identify target markets, prepare for promotional events and how to conduct effective contract negotiations.

“This initiative is beneficial to Rwanda’s tourism industry and our stakeholders as we seek to expand and transform our tourism market into the ultimate leisure and MICE destination. The project is therefore quite timely in terms of supporting women entrepreneurs especially those in the tourism industry, Sayinzoga, told Business Times.

Carol Namatovu, the Vice Chairperson Rwanda Tours and Travel Association, said there is need to promote gender equality within the tourism industry to spur growth.

“The project is therefore a fundamental pillar in terms of equipping and facilitating the women to tap into the high- end market, whose expectations and needs are equally high,” she noted.

The idea is to connect more than 5000 women to global markets by 2020, she added.

In Rwanda, tourism contributes to 4.6% to GDP and 30% of the country’s exports.

And in 2016 alone tourism accounted for $404 million in forex exchange. The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) has already projected that the tourism sector will fetch about $444 million (about Rwf370 billion) in 2017, up from $404 million last year.

The increase in revenue is largely due to continued tourism promotion efforts as well as the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Events and Exhibitions (MICE) strategy.

Rwanda

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RDB Moves to Tap Into W.Africa’s Tourism Market

By Peterson Tumwebaze

Rwanda Development Board (RDB) is seeking to attract more tourists and investors from West Africa.

During the 13th international market travel exhibition held in Akwaaba, Lagos Nigeria early this week, RDB showcased Rwanda’s remarkable attractions and investment opportunities as part of efforts to attract more tourists and investors to Rwanda.

Billed as West Africa’s main travel and tourism fair, the 13th Africa Travel Market Akwaaba 2017 attracted more than 10,000 potential tourists from 20 countries.

Stanislas Kamanzi, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Nigeria, told The New Times that the fair is a good business opportunity to market Rwanda’s potential.

“We showcased our premier business and tourism potential and urged the investors to come to Rwanda and invest in diverse range of unique experiences, for both leisure and business travel,” Kamanzi said.

Rwanda is also leveraging on the current expansion strategy of RwandAir to further spread its wings to all major West African rich capitals.

The national carrier recently announced it will be expanding its foot print into more West African countries as part of the strategy to promote trade and tourism but also increase connectivity on the continent.

Speaking at the event, Kamanzi, emphasised the importance of tourism in Africa particularly in terms of boosting intra-trade and deepening relations amongst African countries.

He stated that Rwanda’s participation at Nigeria’s leading travel show presented a good opportunity to tap into a fast-growing market of outbound tourists in Africa.

Belise Kariza, the chief Tourism officer at RDB said the trade fair presented Rwanda an opportunity to share knowledge and expertise on how best the tourism sector can be developed.

RDB projects that the tourism sector will fetch about $444milliom in 2017 up from $404million the sector fetched in 2016.

The rise in revenue from the sector in 2017 banks on continued tourism promotion efforts as well as Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Events and Exhibitions (MICE) which is increasingly becoming popular.

According to Josephine Fifi Rurangwa, the Head of Africa Expansion at Wakanow “there is a lot of potential, Rwanda is a beautiful country and a lot has been done to promote business tourism.”

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Liberia: Cabinet On Roads Conditions

Members of the Liberia cabinet on Wednesday received updates and a presentation outlining the present condition of our roads, difficulties and challenges facing road users, key factors causing traffic growth, progress to date, traffic flow tables, Vamoma junction, Old Road junction, Congo Town by-pass (Ministerial complex), S.K.D Boulevard junction and preliminary estimated cost.

The presentation also covered inconvenience in travel time, difficulties of maneuvering in and out of traffic, the need to overtake difficulties at designated locations, delays to incoming vehicle from the community through access roads, and overall traffic delay

Cabinet also received and reviewed the National Action Plan of the Open Government Partnership under the auspices of the Ministry of information Cultural Affairs and Tourism as well as updates on the status of road infrastructure and reforms in the Civil Service Agency.

An Executive Mansion release said, Liberia’s Open Government Partnership Commitments and Action Plan for the period 2017 – 2019 underscored the conduct of successive general presidential elections held in 2005 and 2011; the rule of law and economic recovery on irreversible trajectory; reforms made in confronting corruption, waste and abuse, freedom of information Act, public procurement and concession Act; public financial management Act; the Extractive Industries transparent Act as well as the Revised General Auditing Commission Act. The key pillars of the Open Government Partnership have been thrust on transparency, citizen participation, accountability and integrity, technology and innovation

Meanwhile, Cabinet also received special update encompassing checklist for initial sexual harassment inquiry process in workplaces. The checklist underpins an advisory to all parties of the need for confidentiality and limitations; advise all parties of responsibility to conduct inquiry or further investigation by human resource; investigate promptly, conduct a thorough and impartial inquiry; take immediate action when necessary, among others.

In a related development, Cabinet reinforced the submission handover notes by Ministries, Agencies and Commissions in view of the September 30 deadline. Cabinet also received updates on Liberia’s pending participation in the ongoing United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

Liberia

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