The tireless effort of Business and Financial Times correspondent Edward Adjei Frimpong in promoting the growth and development of the tourism industry, through his write-ups has been acknowledged by the industry regulator, Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA).
The GTA has crowned him [Edward] as the 2019 Best Tourism Journalist in Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions. He received a citation and plaque, signifying certificate of excellence in his reportages.
This is the third time in the last six years that he has been awarded by the industry regulator. In 2014 and 2016, the B&FT correspondent was adjudged ‘Best Tourism Journalist’ in the erstwhile Brong-Ahafo Region for his outstanding performance.
A citation presented to him reads: “Your appearance on the media scene has extensively offered a platform for the tourism industry in Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions. The profundity of your content analysis and statistical promotions make your print media exceptional in the country. The Ghana Tourism Authority recognizes and appreciates your contribution towards the creation of awareness of tourism potentials, challenges and prospects of the regions and beyond. For this, we confer on you Tourism Journalist of the Year 2019.”
Presenting the award, Acting GTA Manager in charge of Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions, Joseph Appiagyei, said the 2019 Tourism Awards should have been organised on March 20, 2020, but due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the event was suspended, adding “in respect of the safety protocols, authorities have resolved to hand over the awards to the deserving individuals and organizations privately to avoid congregating under one roof.”
He congratulated the winners for their hard work, perseverance and contribution to tourism development in the regions and the country at large.
“The essence of tourism awards is to stimulate competitiveness in the tourism industry among practitioners, thereby ensuring that high operational standards are observed as required by the Authority. Even though the 2019 awards deviated from the original norm, this does not negate the importance of maintaining the quality operational standard in the industry,” he said.
Commenting on the impact of COVID-19 on the industry, Mr. Appiagyei urged hospitality operators to be innovative and adapt to the new normal to stay afloat. “There is a complete paradigm shift as far as the way of doing things are concerned. Zoom conferences and meetings are the order of the day and you need highly educated staff to adapt to the changing trend as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
In all, 20 organizations and individuals in the regions were awarded by GTA for the year under consideration. Eusbett Hotel, Sunyani won the Best 3-Star facility, Royale Unity Hotel-Berekum took the 2-Star category while Zeniel Oasis Hotel-Goaso was acknowledged as Best 1-Star Hotel. Best budget, guest house and hostel categories were awarded to Micas Executive Lodge-Techiman, Pokuaa Gust House-Dormaa-Ahenkro and Presbytery Hostel-Sunyani respectively.
The rest are:
- African Origin Travel & Tour, Sunyani-Travel Agency of the Year.
- Isaac Sarkodie (Boabeng Fiema Monkey Sanctuary-Site guide of the Year.
- Kintampo Waterfalls-Visitor Attraction of the Year.
- Wooden Tower Restaurant, Kenyasi-Restaurant of the Year (International)
- Mandela Restaurant, Sunyani-Restaurant of the Year (Indigenous)
- Paradise Drinking Spot, Sunyani-Drinking BAR of the Year.
- Edward Adjei Frimpong (B&FT)-Tourism Writer of the Year.
- Obaatampa Chop Bar, Dormaa Ahenkro-Traditional Caterer of the Year.
- Villakan Hotel, Techiman-Consistent Payment of tourism Levy (accommodation)
- Jakosa Gardens Restaurant, Sunyani- Consistent Payment of Tourism Levy (Catering)
- Ghana Television (GTV)-Tourism Oriented Media
- Emmanuel Dattey, CEO of Royale Unity Lodge, Berekum-Honorary
- Joseph Adom, Sunyani-Honorary
- Afena Oti Godson, Director-Encom Hotel, Techiman-Honorary