The Management of National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR) on Friday, 2nd June 2023, announced the names of Most Outstanding Staff Members of the Year 2023 and Best Campus of the Year 2023.

The yearly Best Campus and Outstanding Staff Members award system was introduced by the current Director General of NIHOTOUR, Nura Sani Kangiwa in 2021.

The award system is a 12-calendar month performance evaluations matrix that straddles a preceding and a current year, hence this latest award is for May 2022 to June 2023. The winners will be publicly decorated during the Gala Night of NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival on the 17th of June.

Lagos Campus emerged as the Over-all Best NIHOTOUR Campus of the Year 2023. The Coordinator of NIHOTOUR Lagos Campus is Mrs. Chinyere Uche-Ibeabuchi. More so, Mrs. Gemma Simon, the SERVICOM Unit Head in NIHOTOUR Abuja office, emerged as the Best Staff of the Year; and Mr. Haladu Habu Wakili, a staff in the Registry Unit in NIHOTOUR Abuja office, emerged as the Most Dedicated Staff of the Year 2023.

In keeping with the rewards tradition introduced by Nura Sani Kangiwa, the Director General of NIHOTOUR, the announced winners will be given travel rewards.

Coordinator, National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR) Lagos Campus, Mrs Chinyere Uche-Ibeabuchi

Accordingly, Mrs. Chinyere Uche-Ibeabuchi, the Lagos Campus Head, and Mrs. Gemma Simon, the SERVICOM Unit Head, will both have a paid vacation to Tunisia; while Mr. Haladu Wakili and his wife, will be given a paid vacation to Senegal.

Nura Kangiwa had months ago explained to some of the Institute’s top level Management that, “NIHOTOUR as a Federal Government parastatal is primarily a public service provider and enabler for the development of Nigeria’s Hospitality and Tourism, communities, particularly personnel and businesses in the industry. We are here to serve the needs of the public and, to my mind, for us to do that most effectively we need to build internal processes that encourage staff excellence, improve our zonal operations and maintain sustainable reward systems that keeps all staff productive and motivated. That’s one of the reasons we must provide for NIHOTOUR staff foreign travels to leading tourist destinations for holidays and cognate experience.”

The Director General clarified that, “we need to improve on the country’s tourism industry development support services and administration. My years in the private sector has convinced me that, well-informed and cognately experienced civil servants are naturally more progressive in addressing sector-specific needs and quick to provide intervention services to personnel and businesses in the industry. To these end, among others, I will ensure more NIHOTOUR staff, at the three levels – top, middle and junior levels – are progressively exposed to emerging domestic and international best practises in other leading tourism destinations, through fully-funded trips, as one of the rewards for exemplary work in the Institute.”

Kangiwa concluded that, “Nigeria is arguably the most resourceful cultural tourism destination in Africa today! Nigeria’s diversity of tribes, are producing internationally-appealing eclectic traditional festivals, fashion trends, musical acts, culinary, and creative cultural arts. These are empirically evident to us all. Moreover, by the Establishment Act of NIHOTOUR, we are duty-bound to provide improved public services to workers in the industry, stakeholders and other government agencies. Our services should, eventually, crystallise Nigeria’s cultural tourism potential into becoming the most generative cultural tourism economy in the continent.”

The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism of Nigeria is established by an Act of Parliament to train, certify and register personnel in Nigeria’s Hospitality, Travel and Tourism sectors.

Over the years, NIHOTOUR has emerged as Nigeria’s leading Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Institute with 10 campuses across the country.

NIHOTOUR is equally the Coordinator of Nigeria’s pacesetting Hospitality and Tourism Sectors Skills Council of Nigeria (HTSSCN).

The Institute started operations in 1988 following a tripartite Agreement involving the Federal Government of Nigeria, the Untied Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

It is on record that Nura Sani Kangiwa, the Director General of NIHOTOUR has since 2021, on assumption of duty, embarked on renovation of most of the Institute’s zonal campuses and also facilitated better working conditions of staff, through enhanced welfare programs.

The DG has also increased the number of on-site NIHOTOUR campuses from 8 to 10, with a promise to further increase the number to 12 by the end of this year 2023.

The newly announced winners of the Best Campus and Most Outstanding Staff Members of NIHOTOUR will be decorated and given their travel reward packages on 17th June 2023 during the NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival gala night at the Abuja International Conference Centre.

On the same night, the Institute will also give out multimillion Naira prizes to the top-three culinary schools that won the NIHOTOUR cooking competition held in May 2023 to herald the 3rd NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival.

NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival was first held in June 2021. The food festival, which is now the fastest growing of such food and culture festivals in Africa, is conceptualised to upskill Nigerian gastronomes and other operators in the Hospitality and Tourism sectors on nitty-gritties of processing, preparation, presentation, packaging and promotion of foods and beverages, especially Nigerian traditional cuisines.

The over-riding objective of NIHOTOUR Gastronomy Festival is to keep improving the expertise of personnel in the hospitality industry and to better position Nigeria as the ‘Mecca’ of Gastronomy Tourism in Africa.

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