By Taiye Olayemi
Dr Benson Bana, Tanzanian High Commissioner to Nigeria, on Thursday said that President Bola Tinubu’s administration would bring about improved transformation in the tourism and culture sector in Nigeria.
Bana expressed confidence in the new administration when he paid an appreciation visit to Goge Africa in Lagos as he rounds off his diplomatic mission in Nigeria.
“I believe President Tinubu has the vision and objectives to deliver in the area of tourism, appointing ministers to champion the course of the industries.
“Nigeria is our role model and big brother. If Nigeria makes good policies and decisions to champion the growth of tourism, other African nations will learn and improve as well,” he said.
Bana appreciated Goge Africa for the support and cooperation he had enjoyed in the course of his tenure in Nigeria.
He recalled that when he was posted to Nigeria four years ago, Goge Africa was his first point of call.
“When I came to Nigeria to champion the course for economic diplomacy, Goge Africa was my first stop, so, I have come to appreciate Isaac and Nneka for the support enjoyed so far.
“The relationship enabled me to facilitate cooperation and collaboration between Goge Africa and the entities in Tanzania who specialise in tourism.
“We have made it possible for Nigerians to explore the flora and fauna beauty that Tanzania has to offer.
“We are happy that Goge Africa has been a good friend in terms of championing the cause of tourism, educating people on the tourism potential in Tanzania.
“Tanzania is the home of Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, Ngorongoro and the beautiful white beaches of Zanzibar,” he said.
Bana, who described the relationship between Nigeria and Tanzania as a great one, pledged to further foster the relationship going forward.
He said in the course of his tenure, he was able to upscale cultural diplomacy between Nigeria and Tanzania.
He said the Tanzanian national language, “Swahili”, has gained prominence in Nigeria with different forms of collaboration established to teach Nigerians.
“Swahili has found its way into Nigeria, there is an agreement between the University of Port Harcourt in Rivers State and Balsam University in Tanzania to teach Swahili in Nigeria.
“Also, such agreement exists with University of Ibadan and University of Abuja. We have also developed cooperation between the Tanzanian Broadcasting Corporation and Voice of Nigeria (VON). They are now broadcasting in Swahili language.
“And at the moment, we are teaching about 27 members of staff of VON Swahili language to help them enhance their capacity,” he said.
In her response, Mrs Nneka Isaac-Moses, Managing Director, Goge Africa, said: “We appreciate Dr Bana for his invaluable contributions to the growth of tourism and culture in Africa.
“His dedication has played a crucial role in strengthening the cultural, political and economic ties between our nations, as well as various stakeholders in the tourism industry.” (NAN) (nannews.ng)
Edited by Muhyideen Jimoh/Folasade Adeniran