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Africa is Where Civilization and World Tourism Day Began

ATB Cuthbert Ncube

The World Tourism Network together with the African Tourism Board joined UNWTO today in celebrating World Tourism Day.

September 27, 2021 was a day to forget differences, challenges and COVID-19.

Tourism is inclusive for all and will succeed even better and smarter when adjusting to the COVID-19 environment.

  • The World Tourism Day was instituted at the third session of UNWTO in Torremolinos, Spain on the 17th of September, 1979 by a Nigerian called IGNATIUS AMADUWA ATIGBI.
  • The late Ignatius Amaduwa Atigbi, a Nigerian national, was the one who proposed the idea of marking September 27 of every year as World Tourism Day, that is why people call him “Mr. World Tourism Day”.
  • Today African Tourism Board celebrated World Tourism Day with all of Africa and the world. It was a day of fun, and a day to forget COVID-19

The motion to launch World Tourism Day was raised by Mr. Ignatius Amaduwa Atigbi at UNWTO in the year 1979. He was the first Director-General of Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation(NTDC), then called Nigerian Tourist Association(NTA), He was also the Chairman of the African Travel Commission(ATC).

In 1980, the United Nations World Tourism Organization celebrated World Tourism Day as international observance on September 27. This date was chosen as on that day in 1970, the Statutes of the UNWTO were adopted. The adoption of these Statutes is considered a milestone in global tourism. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness of the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political, and economic values worldwide.

Ignatius Amaduwa Atigbi in 1979 – Mr. World Tourism Day

He died at the age of 68 on December 22,,1998 and was buried in his hometown, Koko, Delta State.

Today World Tourism Day was celebrated across Africa and around the world.

For many, this was a day off from the worries of COVID-19 and the damage this pandemic has done to the travel and tourism industry worldwide.

Cuthbert Ncube, Chairman of the African Tourism told eTurboNews:

“I was celebrating World Tourism Day under the African skies in the Mountain Kingdom of Eswatini. With me was the ATB Brand Ambassador Mr Sandile of South African Tourism,

Eswatini is the new home for the African Tourism Board.

A happy ATB Chairman enjoying Eswatini on World Tourism Day

“Much of Africa is now open for International Visitors to come and explore our diversity in terms of Culture, our great opportunities for investment as we acknowledge the impact and contribution of Tourism towards growth and sustainability in creating jobs.

We need to have a total inclusion across the globe in leveling the ground which has and not been leveled and Africa with its diverse offerings has played a pivotal role in contributing towards the global GDP.

Our communities should benefit from some of the spinoffs thus as we celebrate this day Africa should be focusing on critical implementation of Domestic and community-based tourism as the baseline for a sustainable activation of our Tourism economies.

It’s not enough to be carried away in celebrating this day, since many of our communities live in poverty. We need to engage in a holistic approach to appreciate the tourism value chain that benefits the custodians of our heritage.”

eTurboNews received responses from many African countries, including Angola:

ATB Ambassador: Kuyanga Diamantino: WTD, from Angola. We believe in total recovery, we believe in the Public and Private Sector’s efforts to build a strong African Tourism Destination. We believe in África Development through SUSTAINABLE TOURISM DEVELOPMENT

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About the author

Juergen T Steinmetz

Juergen Thomas Steinmetz has continuously worked in the travel and tourism industry since he was a teenager in Germany (1977).
He founded eTurboNews in 1999 as the first online newsletter for the global travel tourism industry.

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