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  • Chidozie Uzoezie

African Sports Tourism Nigeria 2021 Ends on High Note

The 3rd edition of African Sports Tourism Summit & Masterclass, one of the activities of African Sports Tourism Week - the premier and pan-African sports travel trade event, where sports and tourism stakeholders and administrators exchange a hand of fellowship and cross-breed ideas towards an Africa where sport is viewed and approached as tourism - took place in array of glorious colors.

The hybrid event which took place at Radisson Blu Anchorage, VI, on the 5th of November, 2021, attracted thoughts leaders from across the world.

Barr. Seyi Akinwunmi - 1st Vice President of Nigeria Football Federation, Sola Aiyepeku - Executive Chairman of Lagos State Sports Commission, Ademola Ogunsesan – Project Manager of Lekki Conservation Centre (Nigeria Conservation Foundation, Princess Adenike Adedoyin Ajayi - Permanent Secretary of Lagos State Ministry of Tourism, Arts & Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed represented by Tony Ukpoju and Folorunsho Coker - DG of Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation represented by Rotimi Aiyetan were the administrators in attendance.

Desmond Chiji, LaLiga Global Network Delegate to Nigeria & Ghana took the audience, largely made up of administrators, on a masterclass on How Spain rose to be a choice sports destination.

Also from across the ocean, the panel session that discussed ‘Sports Tourism & Legacy for Destinations’ was joined by Lou Mengsol - President of US Sports Congress and Grant MacDonald - CEO of Sports Tourism Canada.

Former Seychelles Minister of Tourism - Alain St. Ange and Cuthbert Ncube - Chairman of African Tourism Board delivered goodwill speeches.

The conversations were harped around synergy across the sport and tourism divides, and inclusion. Panelists stressed the need operate a system where every administrator across the value chain is invited to the table, in order to arrive at a winning sports tourism strategy.

The event also featured induction into African Sports Tourism Hall of Fame. Some of the notable individuals and brands inducted into the hall of fame were Ibom Icon Hotel & Golf Resort, Gov. Babajide Sanwoolu, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Amaju Pinnick, Barr. Seyi Akinwunmi, Kunle Soname, Moyo Ogunseinde.

Speaking to media men after the summit, the founder of African Sports Tourism Week, Prince Deji Ajomale-McWord said “this is the largest convergence of administrators we’ve ever hosted, since the event debuted in 2018. This tells us one thing. They are beginning to pay attention to this crusade. The desire to start the conversation that will culminate in proper collaboration between these two crucial landscapes, is growing”.

African Sports Tourism Week Nigeria 2021 ended with Diplomacy Stableford Golf Tournament, the annual recreational convergence of diplomats, which is dedicated to the celebration of diplomats, diplomacy, human migration, travel and tourism.

The tournament, which held on the 12th of November, 2021, in Ikoyi Club 1938 was graced by Madam Celine Lafoucriere - Chief Officer of UNICEF Lagos, Amb. Olukayode Fayomi (Rtd), Amb. Ademola Onafowokan (Rtd), Consul General of South Africa - H.E Mr. Darkey Africa, Mr. Muhamud Cesay of Gambian High Commission and Consul General of Ghana H.E Ms. Samata Bukhari.

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