The Northern Regional Manager for the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), Alhaji Hakeem Ismail, has stressed the need for players in the hospitality industry to design and implement improved safety measures at their facilities to safeguard the welfare of clients and staff.
This, he noted, will aid in reducing incidents of crime, terrorism, natural disasters and man-made hazards which have the potential to dent the sector’s reputation, and have adverse implications on patronage.
The Regional Manager, who stated this to the B&FT in an interview, disclosed that the gradual reopening of hospitality and tourism facilities has resulted in a decrease in the rate of unemployment for the region.
“We have observed that opening the tourism sites and other places of interest has been greeted by a sharp rise in patronage. Perhaps more importantly, this has been done with the COVID-19 safety protocols duly observed,” he said.
Mr. Ismail indicated that the authority will further collaborate with the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and the Ghana Standard Authority (GSA), as well as operators in the sector to ensure greater levels of compliance.
He added that his outfit, since outbreak of the pandemic, has been assisting sector players in the design of sensitisation procedures and record-keeping for all activities undertaken at their facilities. He advised the operators to prioritise the health of their guests by providing dedicated areas for activities, such as smoking, which can be detrimental to other patrons.
As part of their due diligence undertakings, the Manager tasked them to ensure clients provide acceptable identification cards, as well as names and numbers of the next of kin for ease of contact in the event of an emergency. He added that while many clients may be inclined to decline the request, there is a need to employ diplomacy to get the requisite information.