Following the suspension on social gatherings and partial lockdown imposed on Bauchi state as a result of the outbreak of coronavirus, hotel proprietors in the state have lamented that their businesses have been paralyzed.
Addressing newsmen on Monday at Obuna Royal Hotel, Bauchi, the Chairman Nigeria Hotels Association Bauchi state chapter Eze Patrick Anyanwu who stated this, appealed to the state government to assist hotel owners with the sum of N500 million to save the hotels from collapse.
“There are about 140 hotels across the state and the COVID 19 pandemic has affected our business negatively such that we have now resorted to borrowing loans from banks to maintain the hotels and pay staff salaries.”
“Despite our plight, we are expected at the end of the month to still pay taxes.We must pay for electricity, water and so on. Some of our staff are being paid fully while others are paid half salaries, yet we have not decided to sack any staff yet.”
“We normally get our customers through neighboring states. The lockdown on neighboring states have affected our businesses negatively. Some of us borrowed money from banks in order to maintain our hotels, If we are not working, how can we repay the loan.If the 140 hotels in the state go bankrupt and collapse, many workers who earn a living from them will be jobless.”
“Hotels in Bauchi state, totalling about 140, contribute to the internally generated revenue and socio-economic development of the state.It has been helping in terms of providing gainful employments for our youths. We are hereby requesting for N500 million financial assistance from the government as palliative”, he said
The Chairman said the financial palliative has become very imperative so that the hotel industry in the state does not collapse completely.