Dozens of Hotel and Restaurant operators in the Eastern Region have besieged the office of the Eastern Regional Ghana Tourism Authority in Koforidua to officially legalize their operations.
Management of the various hospitality industry rushed to the offices of the GTA after the authority last week closed down 31 hotels in the Eastern Region for operating illegally.
The Ghana Tourism Authority has been entrusted to register and license every tourism business and hospitality facility in Ghana by the Tourism Act (817) and it’s relevant Legislative Instruments L.I. 2238 Tourism Regulations, 2016.
The Authority last week embarked on a 3-day enforcement exercise to clamp down on facilities operating illegally in the region.
31 hotels including hostels and guest houses at Akim Oda, Nkawkaw, Koforidua, Kyebi, Begoro, Kwahu, Asasewa, Somanya, Adeiso and Nsawam were closed down in the operation which was carried out by 3 separate teams with the supervision of the Ghana Police Service.
Managers of most of these entities have thronged the GTA office in Koforidua to pay the necessary stipulated fees and are currently going through the documentation processes of regularising their operations.
Frederick Agyei- Rudolph, the Eastern Regional Manager of the Ghana Tourism Authority in a Citi News interview indicated that the enforcement exercise is aimed at sanitising the industry to ensure quality delivery.
“The regional task force will sustain the enforcement exercise throughout the year to weed out all illegally operating tourism hospitality facilities in the region. Beyond the fact that, operating a hospitality facility without a valid operational license issued by the Ghana Tourism Authority is an act of illegality, it also bothers on issues of compromising on standards of facilities, security and safety of patrons”.
“The Ghana Tourism Authority will, therefore, marshal all its resources to ensure that all operators that have complied and licensed by the authority work in a very congenial atmosphere and supported accordingly, while those that constantly flout the law will be made to face the full rigours of the law”.
Mr Frederick Agyei added that, ” An effective collaboration of major tourism and hospitality stakeholders including regulators, operators, enforcement agencies, sister regulatory, the media and the general public is essential for the success of the tourism industry and it’s our hope the partnership continues to wax strong to weed out recalcitrant illegal operators and advance confidence in the tourism industry”.
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