Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Uzamat AkinbiIe-Yussuf has identified the need to create awareness about the tourism potentials in Badagry in order to attract needed attention to the ancient town.
The Commissioner expressed this view when she led a delegate from the Ministry to Badagry as part of her familiarization and on the spot assessment of tourism potentials in different parts of the State.
According to her, there was need to promote the State’s tourism using the Badagry narratives, especially in attracting foreign tourists.
“With what I’ve seen here in Badagry, it shows that we have lots of activities going on here, hence the need for us to harness these tourism potentials and make it competitive with other cities across the world.
“We have traveled far and near and seen how tourism sector had added value and boosted their Internal Generated Revenue (IGR), if they can, with their little potentials, then we can because ours is second to none,” she said.
Akinbile-Yussuf stressed that part of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s plans in the area of tourism was to make it one of the main sources of financial security in Lagos State with much emphasis and interest in Badagry being the tourism haven of the State.
The commissioner added that with the construction of a theatre centre at the heart of the town, the reconstruction of the Heritage Museum which were at different stages of completion as well as the renovation of Vlekete Slave Market, Badagry billed to regain its rightful place in tourism, arts and entertainment.
She said Badagry remained a tourism centre not only in Nigeria but across West Africa, calling on tourists within and outside the country to visit the ancient town and explore its serene ambience and its beautiful and historical sites.
“We know that human slavery started here and was abolished in 1887, visiting these slave museums, seeing the relics including the Point of No Return would give us a vivid picture of what Africans of those centuries went through. To me, it was an emotional-laden experience listening to the Tour Guide taking us through the historical perspective,” she stated.
The commissioner promised that the state government would devise means to put into maximum use the various tourism point of attractions in Badagry and other areas across the State in order to fulfill its vision for the Tourism and Entertainment sector in the Governor’s T.H.EM.E.S agenda.
Some of the places visited during the tour include: Lagos Theatre, Badagry, Palace of Oba Akran of Badagry Kingdom, Vlekete Museum, Colonial District Office in Badagry and Badagry Heritage Museum.
Others are: the Amphitheatre on the Marina beach front, Toyimi Well (spiritual cleansing well), Agia Tree Monument (the place where Christianity was first preached in Nigeria) and the Point of No Return, Gberefu Island.