Government, through the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture and the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) is working with various relevant stakeholders to set up a Hospitality Training Institute to improve the quality of services in the country.
Mr Spencer Doku, the Manager in charge of Research, Monitoring and Evaluation at the Ghana Tourism Authority, said this in Bolgatanga, Upper East Region, at the 2019 Regional Ghana Tourism Awards.
Mr Doku, who spoke on behalf of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mr Akwasi Agyemang, noted that the project was being funded through the Ghana Tourism Development Project, with sponsorship from the World Bank.
It would train, support and ensure service excellence in the tourism and hospitality sector in the country.
The ceremony was held on the theme, “Growing Tourism beyond the Return.”
The Manager said the Hotel, Catering and Tourism Training Institute (HOTCATT) in Accra, was currently offering training and tour services among other services and the new Institute when established, would address various loopholes in the sector and ensure quality service delivery.
Mr Doku reiterated government's commitment to creating an enabling environment for the tourism sector to thrive and urged the industry players to diversify their operations in the aftermath of COVID-19, to bounce back stronger.
Mr Henry Yeleduor, the Upper East Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority, noted that quality customer service was key to attaining sustainable business practices and called on the industry players to invest, retained their clients and ensure sustainable growth.
“I wish to encourage all tourism practitioners to remain focused on increased quality of service.
I also wish to challenge you to become ambassadors of service excellence in your areas of operation through skills transfer and mentoring other similar establishments, especially emerging businesses,” he said.
Madam Tangoba Abayage, the Upper East Regional Minister in a speech read on her behalf called on stakeholders to invest in the numerous tourism potentials in the region to project it, create jobs and reduce poverty.
In all, 20 awards were given out for best tourism promotion, which included Akayet Hotel in Bolgatanga, 3-Star hotel of the year, Blue Sky hotel, 2-Star hotel of the year, JOCOM Golden, 1-Star hotel of the year, Zaare Hotel, Eborics Lodge, Guest house of the year, Philmeek Catering Services, Restaurant Grade two, and Pacific Gardens, Restaurant Grade three.
The others were Mcclean View, Traditional Caterer, Rosyland Pub in Zebila, Drinking Bar, Gabriel Kugoriamo of the Pikworo Slave Camp, Site Guide, Sirigu Women Organization for Pottery and Arts (SWOPA), visitor attraction, SHCSC Guest House, consistent payment of Tourism Levy, Accommodation, and V3 Travel and Tours, Tour Operator.
The individual awards were Mr Tanko Mohammed Rabiu of TV3, the Tourism Writer of the year, TV3 took home the Tourism oriented media house, Blues International Dance Band won the best tourism programme, Madam Bridget Akasise of SWOPA, woman personality, Department of Hospitality, Catering and Institutional Management of the Bolgatanga Technical University won best collaborative Institution and dedicated support to tourism, Fonky Grand Hotel won the New comer and Tap Hotel won tourism promotion of the year.