Bill to Detach Tourism from MICAT Raised at Senate

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The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules, Order & Administration, ranking Lofa County Senator George Tamba Tengbeh, has submitted to Senate plenary for enactment into law a Bill calling for the detachment of the Bureau of Tourism from the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT).

Senator Tengbeh in his July 17, 2017 communication noted that the Bill, titled: “An Act to amend Chapter 3 of the New Executive Law creating the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism,” needs to be given consideration to ensure that the Tourism sector becomes an autonomous agency.

“The essence of the aforementioned Bill is to make the Bureau of Tourism which has been very dormant over the years, an autonomous agency to enable the bureau become active and a reliable source of income generation in support of our shrinking economy,” the Lofa lawmaker asserted.

When enacted into law Senator Tengbeh, who hails from the culture rich county, noted it will serve as an impetus to create additional job opportunities, “thus creating economic empowerment of our people.”

Lofa County Senator George Tamba Tengbeh

Senator Tengbeh told the Daily Observer Liberia is culturally rich and has some of the Continent’s most attractive tourist sites, but lamented that those areas remain virgin due to the lack of interest by MICAT to tap them.

“For example, we have Lake Piso in Grand Cape Mount, Kpatawe Water Fall in Bong, the Sinoe National Park and the breathtaking coastal line of the Southeast, all waiting for a viable Tourism Bureau to encourage investors to venture into them,” the Senator said.

Senator Tengbeh’s communication comes a month after the Senate passed an investment incentive agreement between the Liberia Government and Musons Group, Incorporated, for the construction of a five star Hotel and Resort in Marshall, Margibi County, at the cost of US$71.6 million.

The President and CEO of the 100 percent Liberian owned Hotel & Resort Joe Gene Mulbah, told the Daily Observer that when completed, his facility among hundreds of attractions will offer helicopter tours of designated tourism sites within Liberia, fishing expeditions, among others.

Meanwhile, the Bill has been sent to the Committee on Information, Broadcasting, Culture & Tourism, chaired by Sinoe County Senator J. Milton Teahjay.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Smart, sensible bill and need to pass immediately. In fact, eliminate the ministry of information and create Liberia Information, Media & Technology Commission for policy regulations. Furthermore, eliminate ministry of internal affairs and shift all cultural matters to the “Bureau of Culture & Tourism ” envisioned by Rep. Tengbeh’s bill.

  2. Long overdue at the eleventh hour?

    Tabled all these bills for next January 2018.

    Concentrate on a peaceful election and its attending consequences. Provide all that is necessary at this time to keep the relative peace and support the electioneering process and continuity to government operations. This is what the Liberian people are yearning for right now – not overnight legislation when no one is fully paying attention.

    Thank you.

  3. If the Government wants to boost tourism the first thing it should do is remove visa requirements from countries whose nationals are amongst the most traveled, that’s the 35 OECD countries.

  4. Firstly, it is very expedient that a bill creating the “ministry of Culture and Tourism” must be introduced and pass into law. This will be of great significance for the country.
    Since the inception of the Sirleaf’s administration, there has been no attention to the upliftment of Liberian culture. Even the center for the upliftment and preservation of our culture, was dismantled by her government. One of the important reasons for the establishment of the then Kendja center, was to receive all visiting guests of the Government of Liberia. But that dream was thrown away by this present government.
    The culture of any society is of paramount importance to the heritage of a society and its people. Most of the times people tell us in foreign land that Liberians do not have culture and that we are Imatators of American culture.
    Tourism, is very important for the viability of the country and could be of major part of revenue income generation for the government.Hotels, beaches, traveling agencies and airlines are areas of concentration. This is very important.
    When this ministry is created, the total reformation of our culture and tourism sectors would be advanced. The powers to execute all forms of policies that will improve these areas could be very good. Not an autonomous agency but a ministry that will have more budgetary allocations and more employments for the unemployed.
    This bill needs more improvements and restructuring with the desire to infuse into it a more broader and greater spectrum of the functionary aspects of government. It is about time that a ministry be created and not an autonomous agency. A ministry will have more power and more operations in the day to day activities of the government of Liberia.
    It can happen and we can get there to make it happen. Schools for Hotels,Culture and Tourism could be established in our higher institutions of learning in order to have the manpower skills to improve and augment these areas of significance.Happy July 26, all fellow Liberians.

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