Mr Femi Adegoke, an artist, has called on the Federal Government to invest more in tourism to diversify and boost the nation’s economy post COVID-19.
Adegoke told newsmen in Ilorin on Saturday that the Coronavirus pandemic has exposed the fact that the nation cannot survive only on oil proceeds.
He said that the nation was blessed with abundant natural sites, adding that government should try and revive the tourism sector.
“I don’t know why tourism in Nigeria seems dormant. Every other nation of the earth harness their tourism sites to boost their economy.”
“We have very beautiful natural sites in Nigeria, but I don’t know why the government is not developing them into world class tourist attractions.”
“It seems to be the least funded and ignored sector in Nigeria. This should not be.”
“Artists like me are not even recognised because people don’t really value our works; we need government support in terms of funding and patronage so that talents like ours do not die,” he said.
On the post COVID-19 period, Adegoke said that if the government invested more in the tourism sector, it would boost the nation’s economy.
“After COVID-19 is over, most countries would enter into recession, because oil is no longer on very high demand.”
“It is skills, talent and other natural resources that should be tapped to fund the economy, one of which is the tourism sector.”
“Medical tourism we know will never be like before, but tourist attractions like art gallery display, the Osun Osogbo festival, Obudu Cattle Ranch, the Mambilla Plateau and so many beautiful water falls we have can also help.”
“Our food can also attract foreigners as some of them want to learn how to cook our local dishes.”
“Government should invest in tourism. I see a good future for tourism in Nigeria, only if it is funded and given adequate attention by government,” he said.