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Lagos State Tourism Promotion Bill Scales Second Reading

The Lagos State Tourism Promotion Bill, 2018 scaled the second reading in the Lagos State House of Assembly on Monday.

The bill, sponsored by nine lawmakers, was to provide for the establishment of the Lagos State Tourism Promotion Agency and for Connected Purposes.

The sponsors are: Hon. Sanai Agunbiade, the Majority Leader; Hon. Olumuyiwa Jimoh, the Deputy Majority Leader; Hon. Elliot Desmond, Chairman, House Committee on Arts, Culture and Tourism; Hon. Fatai Oluwa (Ajeromi Ifelodun II).

Others are: Hon. Nurudeen Solaja-Saka (Ikorodu II), Hon. Oladele Adekanye (Lagos Mainland I), Hon. Victor AKande (Ojo I), Hon. Jude Idimogu (Oshodi Isolo II) and Hon. Sola Giwa (Lagos Island II)

The lawmakers took turns to commend the bill, saying that the state would be better if the bill was passed into law.

In his contributions, Hon. Tunde Braimoh, the Chairman, House Committee on Information and Strategy said that arts and culture were integral parts of tourism.

According to him, development of tourism would bring exponential development to the state.

“Lagos State, no doubt, is gifted with many natural and topographical attributes to attract the world.

“When many African nations like Kenya, Tanzania and others are making huge revenues from tourism, what will Lagos give as an excuse with our natural beauties, aesthetics and endowments?

“We need to be creative, steadfast and determined in tapping into these non-oil revenues. This bill should be given an accelerated passage,” he said.

Hon. Fatai Mojeed, Chairman, House Committee Transport, who said that the bill would not only showcase the state rich cultures, added that it would create more employments and revenues.

Hon. Abiodun Tobun, representing Epe Constituency I said that the promotion of arts and culture would enhance foreign exchange and economy growth.

The Majority Leader, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade said that agency would market and promote the state, saying there were tourists potentials across the state.

Agunbiade, however, said that the power to borrow given to the agency should be subject to the Assembly.

Hon. Gbolahan Yishawu, the Chairman, House Ad hoc Committee on Budget and Economic Planning said: This bill is very timely, it is a right way to go in sustaining tourism in our dear state.

Yishawu, representing Eti Osa Constituency II said that the 2018 budget of the earmarked N14 billion to tourism, saying that it would engender diversity, growth, create jobs and bring prosperity to residents.

Also speaking, Hon. Setonji David, representing Badagry II at the Assembly said: This bill is apt as the highest of employer of labour in the world is tourism and some countries live on tourism alone.

“The tourist potential in Lagos is enormous. It is extremely good for our economy in Lagos State,” he said.

He said that Badagry had the highest tourist potential in the state.

Hon. Ibrahim Layode representing Badagry Constituency I at the Assembly, however, said that most of the historic structure had been demolished and some not well taken care off.

The Deputy Majority Leader, Olumuyiwa Jimoh, who hailed the bill, called for a section on safety, saying an average tourist would want to know about safety.

In his ruling, the Speaker of House, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, who also commended the bill, however, expressed reservation that many heritages in the state had not been standardised for promotion.

“I think I have a reservation on this issue, I agree that we need to promote Lagos State, and source for more revenues and make Lagos State attractive to foreigners.

“We should learn not to put the cart before the horse.

“I think we should be able to articulate and integrate what have. We have fiesta, Lagos carnival, traditional heritages but how have we been able to arrange them and link them?

“How do we promote and showcase our arts and culture for tourism when we have not put all these things together. We need to upgrade what we have before selling them,” he said.

The House later committed the Bill to its Ad Hoc committee on Arts, Culture and Tourism, which is expected to reports to the House in two weeks.

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