Accra, April 6, GNA - The Ministry of Tourism has initiated a training programme for personnel in the hospitality industry to enable them to meet the standards stipulated by Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Regulations.
The regulations, which would be implemented fully by 2006, include the delivery of services to the satisfaction of their clients in order to retain them.
The training is for front office and food and beverage service personnel in the hospitality sector. The Africa Project Development Facility (APDF) and the Government of Ghana are the sponsors. The programme, which started on Wednesday with 2,700 participants in the Greater Accra Region, would be extended to the rest of the country to cover all the 8,000 personnel.
Mr Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, Minister of Tourism and Modernization of the Capital City, said less than 15 per cent of the people working in the hospitality sector had basic training, which affected their efficient service delivery.
He said the Tourism industry was one major sector that generated revenue for the country adding that there was the need to maintain high professionalism to attract more clients.
Mr Obetsebi-Lamptey said lack of training was a major problem facing the industry and this had been aggravated by the lack of enthusiasm on the part of employers to train their staff since most of them left after receiving the requisite training.
He expressed the hope that the training programmes would help to solve the problems of the industry and enhance efficiency. Mr Modou Njie, Regional Manager of APDF, said the way forward for Ghana was to improve the tourism industry and pledged his support for more training programmes for both staff and management.
Mr Thom Sherriff, General Manager of the Golden Tulip Hotel, who is co-ordinating training, urged the participants to make the best out of training to derive the maximum benefit.