Dr. Dagunduro Olatokunbo is the National Treasurer of National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies(NANTA) and this piece sent from Ibadan, condemned the current state of many tourist sites in Nigeria especially Ikogosi Warm Spring, which fortunes has nosedived and needs urgent rehabilitation.
“Nigeria is a nation blessed with many natural sites and destinations as far as tourism is concerned in Africa and the globe at large.
Ranging from one state to another you will marvel at many natural endowment across the nation. With all these gifts of nature, it’s quite disheartening that tourism hasn’t man-up due to the government inability to give the sector the right and sincere attention.
One of such resorts is Ikogosi Warm Spring where hot and cold water meet in Ekiti state, Nigeria.
The resort used to be a must visit place to everyone who visits South West, Nigeria. There used to be a traffic of over 1000 tourists that visited this natural wonder monthly years back.
As a stakeholder in the industry, the hunger to visit and revisit destinations is very vital. My visit with some colleagues in NANTA Western Zone to Ikogosi precisely on the 20th May 2022 was a rude shock as the sorry state of Ikogosi Warm spring Resort stirred us in the face.
The known Igbo Olodumare is by far not as scary as the current state of the resort. It will marvel you that right from the entrance, your mental picture will change. It is like a visit to the graveyard that has been abandoned for ages, even up to the second entrance where the thick vegetation will welcome you with the sonorous sound of the birds that perched on the trees, telling you that you are not welcome here.
The reception, bar and restaurant is now home to termites, rats, snakes, wall geckos and all sorts of jungle creatures.
The rooms from the doors, send you a signal of being hostile to your hospitality as the weak doors are crying for help. The wall, roofing, bed and entire interior are of a truth gnashing teeth for surgical operation to restore the resort to normalcy.
The theatre/cinema roof top has been removed and it’s now a naked structure and the rain and sun is gradually destroying the air conditioners at this resort.
Such a wasting asset, the pride of the entire Ekiti is in its gory and scary state. Permit me to rephrase that there was an Ikogosi Spring Resort.
His Excellency Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Governor of Ekiti State must not hear about this state. Alas he initiated the transformation of the then Ikogosi resort but on his re-election as Governor why will such edifice and legacy be at total collapse. Only if the government comprehends how much revenue had been lost. The Ikogosi Ekiti residents and Ado Ekiti people will affirm the economic demerit as business is at stand still due to the state of the site.
Let me call on the government to take tourism seriously as a sustainable and inexhaustible driver of any economy in the world. Show me any developed nation that doesn’t give its tourism the right attention.
Tourism is a tool to salvage Nigeria from the economic recession and challenges we are facing and with right investment, policy implementation, driving sustainability of our tourism agenda, the Nigerian economy will rise and rebound.