NANTA, all the way at WTM, Nigeria First

By Frank Meke

How do you measure your love for your country? It pans out here in a few hours as the gate of the iconic global tourism market opens to visitors.

As we went through security this morning into this massive creative hangout, the sight of visitors surging and waiting to be let into the complex brought tears to my eyes.

Nigeria, officially, is not here, and it pains. Our minister, beautiful Mrs Ade John, is sick, and it’s obvious. Her permanent secretary is not here. The Director of International Tourism is not here , she ducks and lacks initiative, so team Nigeria can’t fly.

Here, it’s the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies ( Nanta) all the way, yes, they remain unruffled and festive. I love Nigeria, nanta sang and danced.

From the ashes of pain and despair, nanta raised a voice and presence for Nigeria. The big spenders, amazing destinations in Asia, America, and the Middle East are here. They are amazingly oppressive with their massive gold-plated exhibition galleries.

In a few hours, the deals and trades shall start. It is good to know that nanta bore our pain and fear. God bless Susan Akporiaye, President National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies.

Her passion for Nigerian cultural tourism is effectual, , and infectious. Her love bug for Nigeria is unimaginable. I can’t explain the sacrifice for Africa’ s biggest black nation, with a rich and powerful presidency, yet she led her members, her association, all individually paying their way to stand in gap for Nigeria.

We may look” little ” here compared to the Saudis and India, even Ghana, but nanta ensured Nigeria “no carry last.”

Something must give way back home. We can’t continue to appoint and tolerate non performers as national tourism drivers and influencers.

This has gone too far, and Mr. President must bite and clean up the Ministry of Tourism and Nigeria Tourism Development Authority. This agency has brought us shame unend, and it’s time we bring a renewed hope for tourism in Nigeria, or we go to sleep.

Kudos to nanta leadership and members. Let the tourism noise makers keep quiet and let those wey sabi lead the way. Efetebo Awhana nanta’s Diaspora member drove from all the way from Reading to add spice here. This young Nigerian trade professional and founder, Nigeria, Travel weekly magazine and Awards, is a huge inspirational help to nanta here.

Pastor Mrs Chinyere Umeasiegbu, oh dear, she’s the untiring watch agent and encourager to nanta president. I can’t tell you all in one swoop.

But I assure you a full listing of the nanta expedition team that made it here. Hold it, as I was about putting this piece away, two young ladies came asking for Nigeria jollof rice. Did you know my answer to their enquiry? Wait till Wednesday, it is nanta Nigeria day.

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