Jul 3, 2014, 9:31 AM
part of efforts to promote tourism products and to create youth empowerment and
employment, the Ninki Nanka Trail product was launched on Monday, at Gambia Tourism and Hospitality Institute
(GTHI) in Kanifing,
In his launch statement, director general of Gambia Tourism Board Abdoulie Hydara said the Ninki Nanka Trail product is a very important project as far as Gambia tourism is concerned.
“When one travels across the world, he can hardly find the uniqueness of the river Gambia anywhere. The Ninki Nanka Trail is well positioned to be the key activity that would drive The Gambian tourism sector.”
He said the Ninki Nanka Trail is a much needed constrast to the sun, sand and sea package tourism that builds on the untapped potential of the River Gambia aimed largely at the adventure traveler and special interest groups.
Dawda Nyang, director general of Gambia Tourism and Hospitality Institute (GTHI) said the Nikinanka Trail product plays a very important role to GTHI as a institution.
“We play an important role during the internal and external mapping of the trail as well as tools to be use to develop this community base tourism.”
Lamin Fatty, director of Product Development, Investment and Culture at the Gambia Tourism Board said the Ninki Nanka Trail product will be one of the most important products that Gambia ever has, adding that it is going to help in terms of re-positioning The Gambia as a cultural destination.
“It will also help to promote upcountry tourism development,” he noted.
Ngone Panneh, ITC national consultant for Tourism and Creative Industries Development under the European Union funded Youth Empowerment Project (YEP) said the the YEP project is to identify economic opportunities in sustainable tourism industry to empower youth across the country.
She said the project is also meant to support product diversification, capacity building and institutional strengthening, saying ITC has been partnering with the Gambia Tourism Board, National Center for Arts and Culture, The Gambia Tourism and Hospitality Institute (GTHI), the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, communities and associations for the past two years.
Sainey Ceesay, representative of National Center for Arts and Culture (NCAC) said the Niki Nanka trail is a major cultural product which is both the tangible and intangible heritage, saying some of the heritage sites like the Mungo Park at Karantaba and the Stone Circle of the Senegambia fall upon the Nikinanka Trail.
Binta Cassama, Product Developemt Officer of The Gambia Tourism Board, said the launching of the Niki Nanka Trail is in line with one of the strategic objectives of The Gambia Tourism Development Master Plan.
Dr Adama Bah, Product consultant said the Niki Nanka trail has been talked about many years which started with Gambia river excursion.
He said the government and the private sector should be more involved in the development of river Gambia.