THE relocation of the Ministry of Tourism and Arts as well as all tourism agencies to Livingstone will go a long way to revive tourism activities in the tourist capital, Senior Chief Munokalya Mukuni of Kazungula District in Southern Province has said.
Senior Chief Mukuni said he was one of the people who had been calling for the relocation of the Ministry of Tourism and Arts as well as tourism agencies to Livingstone and it was good news that the Government had finally responded in affirmative.
The traditional ruler expressed hope that the relocation would be done soon so that Livingstone start benefiting from various services.
“We have been calling Government to do the task. To us it is good news the Ministry of Tourism and Arts, Zambia Tourism Board (ZTB), Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) and National Heritage Conservation Commission (NHCC) are all coming here.
“I am very glad to hear of that news from Her Honor, the Republican Vice President Inonge Wina. I remember asking Tourism and Arts Minister Jean Kapata recently on the same and she confirmed that she will be relocating to Livingstone,” he said.
During a courtesy call to his palace on Monday, Ms Wina directed the
Ministry of Tourism and Arts to ensure that ZTB Head office was moved
from Lusaka to Livingstone to revamp tourism activities in the country’s Tourist Capital.
Ms Wina said the Government was instructing the Ministry of Tourism and Arts to ensure that ZTB was moved to Livingstone because it was in the tourist capital where action was taking place in the area of tourism.
She said NHCC and all other tourism related Government institutions should also relocate to Livingstone to revamp the tourist town and position it as a centre of tourism in the country.
“We are looking to you (Senior Chief Mukuni) to help us revamp Livingstone tourism because you are considered as a leader in the area of tourism in the country and in the region.
Your initiatives have proved that even individuals can promote tourism even in our villages. From our side as Government, we are instructing the Ministry of Tourism and Arts to ensure that ZTB is moved to Livingstone because this is where action is taking place in the area of tourism,” Ms Wina said.
She noted that Livingstone was at the receiving end of visitors who come through South Africa and Zimbabwe.
“The Victoria Falls is bigger on the Zambian side and but now it appears we are a younger sister to Zimbabwe when it comes to sharing Victoria Falls facility. In that sense, we need to promote Livingstone as a tourist centre,” she said.
Ms Wina said the Government was concerned regarding the current status of Livingstone as a tourist capital.
“We do realise that after moving the provincial capital from Livingstone to Choma, there are some elements of economic depression in Livingstone and this should be addressed as quickly as possible with the efforts of the people of Livingstone n with Government initiatives.
“Government policies will be required to bring development in this area,” Ms Wina said.
Ms Wina also directed the Ministers of Finance Alexander Chikwanda, Local Government and Housing John Phiri as well as Commerce, Trade and Industry Margaret Mwanakatwe to facilitate
She said the Government of President Edgar Lungu was very anxious to see that the facility was opened and used by the people of Livingstone and all those from surrounding areas who wanted to trade from it.
Ms Wina said President Lungu told her categorically that the Livingstone City Council had to find ways of completing the market.
She said she was disappointed that works were still going on at the market when the structure was supposed to be completed.
“But there are other options to complete this market and one such option is to engage the private sector to ensure that this market is complete.
“I will instruct the Minister of Local Government and Housing, Minister of Finance, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry to see how this market can be completed on time. The people of Livingstone are entitled to the best services and we need to complete this market,” Ms Wina said.