Rabo Selah, National President, Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria, has expressed satisfaction over the preparedness of some hotels in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja to contain the Coronavirus pandemic.
Saleh expressed this satisfaction during a solidarity visit with his Governing Council to hotels to ascertain the level of preparedness made by some hotels to reduce the spread of the pandemic.
The FTAN boss commended the effort made by the hotels’ management in taking the necessary precautionary measures that could avert the pandemic.
According to him, the essence of the tour was to sensitise members and also to access the level of their preparedness toward Covid-19.
Saleh commended the effort of the management of the hotels visited, regarding provision of hand sanitisers, which were mounted at every strategic location in the hotels.
Also for the provision of thermometers in checking customer’s temperature.
He said: “As an association, we are here to show support to all our members and businesses in hospitality and tourism industry, making them know that we are together in this trying period.
“We know it is a tough time, but in this tough time, we promise to support each other until we overcome this pandemic.
“We pray with our level of preparedness and with the help of God to overcome the pandemic so that our businesses will continue to flourish as usual.
“We appreciate the staff, customers, but as business operators, we are ready to stand by their health because health is wealth.”
Saleh urged the hotels’ management to continue to put all measures in place, also not to relent in doing what would favour individuals and the country against the pandemic.
Speaking, Chief Chike Ezeudeh, President of Hotel Owners Forum of Abuja, commended the preparedness of the various hotels visited, stressing that it was a global thing.
Ezeudeh said: “If God is helping us, we should help ourselves as well.
“I appeal to the government to do more by passing out the information to the rural populace in order to tackle the pandemic properly,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kevin Brett, General Manager, Transcorp Hilton Abuja, appreciated the team for their visit at the time of the pandemic.
Brett further said hygiene awareness was all they required, adding that their staff had been trained about hygiene.
He said staff were restricted on shaking of hands, hugging, touching of face because it was the easiest way to contact the virus, adding that it was accepted by all customers.
He said: “Some dignitaries that do not want to be stopped, have embraced it.
“We make sure they use the sanitiser regardless of whom you are.
“There is no immunity.
“We do not congest people anymore in the meeting room in order to avoid any negative thing that can be harmful to us.
“Everyone of our staff has a sanitiser.
“As a customer, you must sanitise your hand, of which you may not be allowed to come into the hotel.
“In all our screen, we have the messages showing how guests can prevent themselves from contacting the virus and the measure to be taken.”
Also speaking, Vincent Ugbor, Group General Manager of RockView Hotel in Abuja, said initially customers did not embrace the idea, but when they realised that it was a matter of life and death, they keyed to it.
Ugbor said: “At first, there was a bit of resistance, but when they got the information that it’s a global issue, they started complying, bearing in mind that it’s a matter of life and death.
“Customers asked when they did not see sanitiser and we have reasonable response to that.
“Though it is affecting our business, but ours is to sanitise globally, so that if there is ‘resurrection’ in business, it will be a holistic ‘resurrection’.
“It is not about us as a hotel, but about the industry, nation and world.”
Alhaji Badaki Aliyu, Managing Director of Kapital Klub and Apartment in Asokoro, Abuja, said the management was aware of the pandemic and they had put things in place to reduce the risk.
Aliyu, who is also the Second Deputy President of FTAN, said in a hotel where most of their guests were foreigners, they needed to seriously prepare for their guests and staff.
He said: “We sensitise our staff on how to deal with those responsibilities.
“We have good relationship with public health groups.
“Nigeria Center for Disease Control were here to enlighten us the more in order to make sure everybody is on alert.
“It is not easy, but what can we do it.
“We are just trying to to do our best and pray to God to take control in order not to have such pandemic again.”
Newsmen report that the hotels visited demonstrated readiness in the eradication of the pandemic from the country.