The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism, on Saturday awarded Alhaji Lai Muhammed, the Minister of Information and Culture and some other prominent Nigerians with Honorary Fellowship of the institute in Abuja.
This was at the Second combined convocation ceremony of the institute where 3,000 students of the institute graduated.
Also awarded with honorary fellowship of the institute were the Etsu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abuakar, Sen. Rochas Okorocha, Dr Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Productivity and Mr Rauf Aregbesola, Minister of Interior, among others.
Muhammed, who was represented by Mrs Patricia Narayi, Diector of Domestic Tourism, commended NITOHOUR for the recognition, and for its contributions to the growth of the tourism industry.
He said that the NITOHOUR as an important public sector institute was dedicated to the growth of the tourism, hospitality and travel industries.
He advised the graduands to deploy the training they received effectively to the growth and development of the industry and be job creators instead of job seekers.
The Permanent Secretary of information and culture ministry, Mrs Grace Gekpe, also commended the institute for its effort to produce skilled manpower for the hospital and tourism industry.
In an address presented on her behalf by Mrs Halima Sani, a Deputy Director in the ministry, Gekpe said that the global focus in tourism was growing astronomically because of high returns it yielded on investment and its multiplier effect.
She pledged government’s support to the institute.
The Acting Director-General of NIHOTOUR, Dr Momoh Kabir, said that the institute had the mandate to provide platform for well trained, professional workforce that could provide standard service delivery in the tourism and hospitality industry
Kabir said that the convocation was packaged to accommodate award of Diplomas, Post Graduate Diplomas and Certificates to about 3,000 graduands.
“Today’s occasion calls for celebration by the students and the institute, having successfully completed series of academic exercises.
” While congratulating the graduate-trainees, I make haste to urge them to make the best use of the skills and knowledge they have acquired by ensuring delivery of best services possible in their places of work,” he said.
He called on organisations in the industry to take advantage of the NIHOTOUR platform to train and retrain their staff.