General News of Friday, 2 February 2018
Source: Daniel Kaku
Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Mrs. Catherine Abelema Afeku, also known as Nzema Yaa Asantewaa, has chided Franklin Cudjoe of IMANI Africa over the proposed establishment of ‘Akwaaba Hotels’ in Ghana.
Speaking to the media after the Minister’s ‘Meet The Press’ on Monday, January 29, 2018 in Accra, the IMANI Africa described the establishment of the ‘Akwaaba hotels’ by the government as “completely needless”.
IMANI Africa revealed to the media that “the NPP government plans to build new hotels to be named “Akwaaba” Hotels is not only wasteful but completely sidesteps the existing challenges the tourism sector faces and makes a mockery of the much-trumpeted need for a private-sector focused change management agenda for the sector”.
In a sharp rebuttal however, Catherine Afeku noted that, IMANI Africa’s position on the issue smacks of ignorance and an attempt to score cheap political points.
“I didn’t say government was going to build and manage hotels,” she emphasized.
She reaffirmed her statement that, “The plan is that the Government was going to acquire the lands around our key tourist destinations and use it as equity to partner interested investors in what would be ‘Akwaaba’ Hotels.
“Before we shout ourselves hoarse, its the same model that has been or was used for us to have Kempinski, Movenpic where GOG has shares through GTA. Government is also a shareholder in Accra City Hotels or Novotel”, she added.
She also schooled IMANI Africa on the proposed ‘Tourism TV’ that the Ministry would facilitate the acquisition of a TV license for a private-sector operator who will collaborate with the operator to focus on Tourism, Arts and Culture programming.