Assembies asked to give priority to tourism development
By Stephen Asante, GNA
Kumawu (Ash), May 11, GNA – District Assemblies have been asked to focus priority attention on the development of rural and agro-tourism to help create wealth and boost the local economy.
Mrs. Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare, the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, said more should be done to open up the rural areas and the agricultural sector for tourism.
She said she wanted see the assemblies put in strong energy and effort to improve access roads to cocoa growing areas “where tourists could for instance, witness the cocoa trees, harvesting of cocoa pods and drying of the cocoa beans”.
Inaugurating the Centre for Technology and Economic Development (CTED) at Kumawu in the Sekyere Afram Plains District, the Minister said “it should also be possible for tourists to visit rural areas where cassava is harvested and processed into ‘gari’ or visit palm tree plantation where palm nuts are harvested and processed into palm oil production”.
She noted that the nation’s prime tourism attractions were concentrated in those areas and cited historic slave route sites of Salaga, Bono-Manso, Assin-Manso, Assin Praso, Elmina and Cape Coast.
She again made reference to the Tongo-Tengzuk rocks and shrine, Buabeng-Fiema monkey sanctuary, Tafi Atome monkey sanctuary, Wechau hippopotamus sanctuary, Paga crocodiles, Mole and Kakum National Parks - all community-based tourism sites.
These places had over the years brought in foreign exchange to the nation.
The CTED is a collaboration between the Kumawu Traditional Council, New York University (NYU) and Africa House to build the capacity of the people in the tourism and hospitality industry in areas of tourism marketing, research and information, alongside product and infrastructure development.
Professor Yaw Nyarko, an official of Africa House and a lecturer at the NYU, said the Centre would transform the local economy through tourism.