WTM 2014: Sally Mbanefo Cuddles Diaspora Nigerians To Come Win Hearts For Nation


facinating NigeriaWTM 2014: Sally Mbanefo  Cuddles Diaspora Nigerians To Come Win Hearts For Nation-The New Director General, Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation,(NTDC),  Mrs. Sally Mbanefo has appealed to Nigerians to turn out in large numbers to celebrate the country’s tourism endowment  in the coming World Trade Market in London this November as the World top best  tourism destination nations once again gather to market their nations and showcase rich tourism trade potentials. WTM exhibition  is an annual  event for the  exhibition of resource potentials on the field of  World Tourism.

Nigeria will line up with other  assemblage of top tourism nations. This year will attract about  184 countries whci will  gather for  four days in a major business tourism exhibition and business networking showcase  to put their nations on top World map of travel and tourism trade. The event which kicks off on Novermber 3, 2014 is  holding at the ultra modern  EXCEL complex in  East London.

Sally Mbanefo enjoined Nigerians to rise up to their own and lift the nation’s flags so that the year’s tourism exhibition would score high once again and draw visitors to Nigeria stand in a repeat of last year records.

Her wake up call is a follow up to her successful outing last where her attempt to revive the once inactive  tourism trade and its potentials of world class integration into World received a big boost and high class success applause from the World trade organisers.

Ms Mbanefo called on Nigerians to celebrate their own and contribute to the image enhancing event which would see the World attention focusing on tourism trade nations across the World. The event will hold for  four consecutive days.

Nigeria’s active participation in World Travel Market has been low ebbed with the entire event personalised and without the expected pomp and pageantry which attend tourism trade marketing at most of the stands. The Nigerian stands has been turn off for many and no publicity to attract tour professionals and other segment of Nigerian UK residents.

Appealing to Diaspora Nigerians, Ms Mbanefo said: “We have reached a turning point where our country cannot be relegated in tourism any more. We have all that it takes and the time is now for every Diasporan Nigerian to come forward and celebrate the nation’s rich culture to dig out the precious potentials.

Sally Mbanefor with two guests
Sally Mbanefor with two guests

She launched a new brand name for the nation’s tourism as she introduces ” Fascinating Nigeria” to the World last year, drawing attentions to the huge potentials Nigeria has that would make her the best World tour destination in the immediate future.

Mbanefo’s début at the WTM in 2013 broke a popularity and visitors’ attendance record with her physical involvement in cultural and traditional display last year. She  proved to the World that  Nigeria has all it takes to lead the  World in travel trade and tourism. She noted that the time is nigh for the nation to look away from its focus on oil.

Her cultural dance display  was a winning streak with many nation’s showing interest  as they visited the Nigerian stand last year.

Her constant presence at the four days event was much the magnet to many as  cultural dances and displays  were held, adding to the nation’s vibrant appearance at EXCEL.

Her action gave Nigerian tourism the needed attention and won her a big accolade among other nations present at the exhibition.

Among those that visited the Nigerian stand were tourism Ministers and tour operating representatives from other countries.

Last year’s participation was more coordinated with more  focus on what the nation has got rather than individualistic display of the past. Lots of visitors pledged support for the Nigerians stand and  future tourism shows involvement on the nation’s stand.

This year’s WTM show is sure to be another successful outing as Nigerians in the United Kingdom are  are assured of a more carnival-like show at the nation’s  pavilion.

Among this years sponsors are of the event are  Arik Airline,  Come to Nigeria Magazine and top tourism related bodies from across Nigeria and abroad.

Others that have queued up to show case their business in this year show are, African Destinations,  Eko Hotel & Suite, Federation of Tourism Association of Nigeria (FTAN), Keystone Bank Limited, Monopoly Africa, Bestman Games, Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, Ogun State Ministry of Culture & Tourism, S.J. Tours, TBI Tour Brokers International Treaven Limited Travels, and Tours West Africa Tourism and Osun Oshogbo Cultural Assemblage.

Niger Flag: Flying higher
Niger Flag: Flying higher

The 2014 WTM  is the 35th World Travel Market outing and it will commence from,   Monday 3 – Thursday 6 November. Participants must register in order for the organisers to assure a more coordinated event and  crowd control.

It is one of the most high profile event in the United Kingdom and the event has its other continental version which are held at different periods over the year round. The London event however is the most well attended and sophisticated with over 50,000 tour trade senior executive personnel in attendance.

“A lot of things on review s Nigeria takes active participation; our tourism assets, our people so hospitable,  our warm, friendly and generous nature, many more to cherish during this year’s even”, Mbanefor said, assuring that art, music,entertainment tourism, festivals and cultural displays would be on feature.

On every year attendance list are  Rivers State Tourism, represented by Sam Dede, Director General, Rivers State Tourism Development Agency, Cross River State Tourism represented  by Gabe Onah, Chairman, Calabar Carnival, representative of Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria [FTAN].

Every year, organisers from  Osun Osogbo Festival and  representatives from  Nolloywood, from Nigeria and United Kingdom are always in attendance among others.

Fatai O.From Fatai Ogunribido, London