By SYDNEY MORWENG
The gogos danced, stomped and ululated whereas boys and girls whistled and twisted their able bodies much to the raving applause from guests.
With searing heat and blazing sun unavoidable, thanks to umbrellas and marquees which dominated the day, however, for the locals it was natural as ever. The majestic Chuene Resort boasting a dam and historical mountains which the CE at Limpopo Tourism the charismatic Rob Tooley described as ‘wife & husband’ are some of the key tourism features in the area.
Notwithstanding its attractions and rich historical background the resort has become a ‘white-elephant’ hence the decision to host the WTD at the venue as part of reviving it back to its’ past glory days.
This year’s theme Biodiversity is considered the most important aspect in the well-being of livelihood in our respective areas, and the call to relevant tourism and local government departments is they must try and preserve the resort for it has rich history of which the locals and entire Limpopo should be proud of.
Tooley went on to note that: “South Africa is one of the most diverse destinations in the World, and how fundamental tourism assets such as Chuene Resort and the importance of tourism growth will result in creation and sustainability of jobs.
The resort is our legacy and we will preserve and protect,” says Tooley who is very fluent in Sepedi which has made him popular with locals.
Although he needs ‘fashion-cops’ for his eye-sore dress code, the CE made a call to his compatriots to come on party and educate youngsters on tourism which is one of the growing sectors globally.
“Be it sport tourism, motoring, travel or medicinal tourism we need to drum this into our fellow youngsters head that tourism firstly, is one of the fastest growing job creator. Out of 10 tourists who visit our country two jobs are created.
Now imagine if we had to entice them by improving our standards of service, dish out proper hospitality and extend our warmth how many will buy into our concept?” he asked.
‘We need tourists to spend their dollars and yens at this resort. They must not use it as gate-way to another destination but consider it as one of the safest, viable and heritage site which deserves unending visitation as a result the locals will feel that they’re part of this important heritage,” he said.
Limpopo hosts a rich invertebrate diversity in all habit niches; however, many species are restricted with centers’ of endemism, said Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale.
Deputy Minister of Tourism Thokozile Xasa, during her key speech although did not make a mention of bench-marks, implementations, transformation within industry and deadlines, she did point out that domestic tourism market accounts for 75% thus contributing R14,5 billion into the coffers of the country for this year only, as a result of successful World Cup.
“An estimated 900 000 direct and indirect jobs were created which augurs well for the department and the country,” said Xasa but pointed out that more work still remains to be completed,” she said.
“South Africa is the third biodiversity country in the world, and as such we should be proud and preserve what we have. Having said that we should bolster our efforts in educating our citizens on biodiversity and what role it plays in our lives.”
With so much expected of her to deliberate on rural tourism projects which is the cornerstone of community development and budget allocations, the Minister failed to account.
Meanwhile, popular school’s tourism competition was won by two pupils from North West, and will be jetting off to Munich in November to present their case study on the importance and development of tourism.