Mr. Akwasi Agyemang, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said this year’s commemoration will be unique, as it coincided with the nation’s declaration and observation of the ‘Year of Return’, a development anticipated to bring into the country thousands of Africans in the diaspora.
“It is exactly 400 years since the first black slave set foot in Virginia, United States (US), and we intend to bring all our brethren and stakeholders together for a historic interaction and communion,” he remarked.
Mr. Agyemang, who was addressing a ceremony to launch activities lined-up for the day, said the private sector is involved, for a successful celebration on the theme: “Tourism and Jobs, a Better Future for All.”
In line with the programme of activities, a grand exhibition would be mounted to demonstrate the tourism potentials of the various districts in the Ashanti Region.
The CEO hinted that the World Trade Organisation (WTO) had established that one in 10 jobs globally was related to the tourism sector, and that, the nation ought to continually invest in the sector to help create many jobs along the value chain.
Mr. Peter Achampong, Ashanti Regional Manager of the GTA, disclosed that his office had begun an intensive education of managers and owners of tourist attraction sites as well as hospitality facilities ahead of the celebration.
This is aimed at sensitising them to good practices in order to enhance the nation’s image and efficient service delivery.
He welcomed the government’s decision to allow Kumasi to host the historic event, saying, as the ‘cultural capital’ of the nation, the programme would further boost tourism arrivals.
“Ashanti Region has the oldest museum – King Prempeh II Museum, the only natural lake in Ghana – Lake Bosomtwe, Manhyia Palace, a repository of cultural heritage, and many more interesting places to satisfy the curiosity of visitors,” he noted.
Nana Bobie Ansah, chief of Bonwire, a historic town noted designs and weaving of the indigenous Kente fabric, called on traditional authorities to support the historic event to ensure its success.