Ruto: Kenya to host Africa Travel Association Congress

Kenya will host the Africa Travel Association (ATA) Congress in November this year.

The congress brings together key players in the tourism travel industry from Africa and the world. Speaking at his Karen Office Deputy President William Ruto said the opportunity would help promote the Country’s tourism.

He said the Government had put in place enough security measures to contain acts of lawlessness including terrorism, which had greatly affected the tourism industry.

“We should not allow terrorism to discourage tourists from visiting this great country. Terrorism and extremists are not unique to Kenya. This is a global issue which requires global efforts to tackle,” he said.

Ruto challenged both local and international media in the country to avoid focusing on trivialities and instead highlight positive gains realized by the governments in the fight against terrorism.

“Let’s avoid negative perception of the country and Africa as whole. This situation has come as a result of misinformation or lack of information about the continent,” he said.

The DP said the government was committed to making Kenya the preferred tourist destination in Africa by vigorously campaigning to boost the country’s image abroad.

Cabinet Secretary East Africa, Commerce and Tourism, Phyllis Kandie who was also present said the ministry was doing everything possible to make the congress a success.

She said such initiatives would ensure the country promotes the tourism sector. “The ministry is looking forward to this congress in Nairobi for the second time. We will have an opportunity to showcase them (guests) our tourists’ sites,” said Kandie.

She said the ministry wants to send the right signal to the world that Kenya is safe and remains the best preferred tourism destination in the world.

The CS  said the ministry was also participating with United States based ATA to market Kenya through road shows in the US streets in the coming months in order to penetrate their lucrative tourists markets.

She said about 115,000 tourists visit the country every year mostly in Safaris and for cultural events.

Kandie said the ministry would also use the unveiling of the Turkana Boy slated for later this month to also popularize Kenya as origin of mankind telling tourists, ‘welcome home’.