Secretary-general of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), Zurab Pololikashvili, has appointed Lai Mohammed, Nigeria’s immediate-past minister of information, as his special advisor.
According to a statement on Tuesday, Mohammed’s appointment was announced at the opening session of the 66th UNWTO Commission for Africa (CAF) currently underway in Mauritius.
Mohammed is expected to help the secretary-general pursue his objective of making Africa a key region for the global tourism economy through his “Agenda for Africa programme”.
The former minister was quoted as saying that he is honoured to be the first Nigerian to take up the role.
“I stand before you, deeply touched and inspired by your generous words of confidence and trust,” he said.
“With so much gratitude for the confidence placed in me by the Secretary General of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Mr. Zurab Pololikashivili and with an unswerving resolve to honour that trust, I humbly accept the appointment as the Special Advisor on Tourism to the Secretary General of this great Organization.
“I am deeply honoured to become the first Nigerian to serve in this capacity. Nigeria is dynamic and diverse in terms of natural and human resources in the areas of tourism, culture, creative industries, technology and other aspects of our national economy.
“Having come so far and rising still, the Nigeria and Africa region in general is living and shaping the full range of achievements and challenges of our current times.
“It is therefore inspiring to take on more responsibilities that will guide the development of tourism in a more responsible and sustainable manner.”