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Ministry, Agency To Tell Rivers Story Through Tourism

The Ministry of Information and Communications, Rivers State, will partner with the Rivers State Tourism Development Agency (RSTDA) to change the negative narrative about the State.

Speaking during a courtesy visit on him by the leadership of the RSTDA, the State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, said the Ministry and the Agency stand a good chance of changing the negative narrative about the State for the better, given the leadership style of the Governor, Nyesom Wike.

The commissioner said, “I can tell you clearly that your vision aligns with our vision. We believe strongly that Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has given the right leadership to our people: he’s creating the right environment, and infrastructure. What is remaining is to sell the tourism potentials of the State. I’m sure that’s why he brought you in, purely on merit. It has nothing to do with political affiliation, because he understands that you know the terrain”.

While assuring of the Ministry’s readiness to collaborate with the Agency, the Commissioner appointed three Directors of the Ministry to work closely with the Agency to clearly work out the modalities for the collaboration. They are: Director of Public Enlightenment, Mr Obele Chu; the Director of Planning, Research and Statistics, Dan Oruwari Fiberesima; and the Director of Publications, Valentine Ugboma.

Stating the purpose of his visit, the Director-General of the RSTDA, Mr Yibo Koko, said it was first to congratulate the Commissioner on his appointment, and to also seek for a collaboration that would change the negative narrative of the State by boosting the State’s tourism potentials.

Koko said, “we will, within the space that we have, create an atmosphere where tourism is a strength with which we can, not just build bridges, but also grow wealth for the people. We can’t do this without your Ministry. In today’s world, we know that communication is key and part of the SDG goals. Eighty per cent of that is based on communication, awareness, and sensitization.

“That is why we have come here not just to tell you what we have planned, but to also show that we’re ready, willing and available, not only to tie into what you already have, but also to show that we can all collaborate together in making sure that the vision of His Excellency is put across for the people to gain access, not just for tourism, but for a friendly and welcome Rivers State, in accordance with the ‘Our State Our Responsibility’ focus”, he said.

“So, we have soft tourism programmes, which we term low-hanging foots. The idea is to have a total buy-in from the citizenry, and to see that the vision of His Excellency is crystal: we’ll be getting everyone, all in one, before we begin to look at the very big picture. Those intangible things that seem like nothing are the big things that we need to have people buying in. we know them as soft, low-hanging foots”, he stated.

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