Tourism Authority develops LI to enforce strict safety at tourist sites

The Ghana Tourism Authority says it is seeking legal backing to enforce strict safety standards at tourist facilities across the country.

This follows the Bunso canopy accident on July 1 in which 20 Junior High School leavers sustained various degrees of injuries when they climbed the walkway in the Eastern Region.

The Eastern Regional Security council has since ordered closure of the facility as investigations into the disaster begins. Managers of the facility have however been given two weeks to fix all the defects on the walkway.

The tourism authority says it is not suspecting foul play after visiting the disaster scene.

However, Ben Ohene Ayeh, Public Relations Manager at the Ghana Tourism Authority told Joy News his outfit is seeking legal backing to begin a nationwide crackdown on substandard tourist facilities.

He is confident the Legislative Instrument which is being developed for parliamentary approval will have “our hands strengthened to go deep into the requirements that are needed before a tourist site is opened to the public.”

He said, “now we are going to licence them and all the requirements that are needed; from security, from environmental issues, from the safety of patrons, and all these would be lined up for operators of tourist sites before their licence to operate would be issued.”

Ben Ayeh described Wednesday’s incident as a “pure case of accident”. He said a “branch peeled off from the main trunk” which brought the about 38 meters high canopy to the ground.

Some of the victims who spoke to Joy News from hospital confirmed that they were allowed to access the facility by its managers after they had paid and were issued with tickets for the walkway. This contradicted earlier claims by the managers that the victims illegally climbed the walkway.

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