Mr. Alexander Nketia, the Volta Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has said bad road network to tourist sites was negatively affecting the development of the industry in the country.
He therefore called on duty-bearers to urgently work at addressing this situation, to harness the tourism resource for national development.
Mr Nketia was speaking at the 2019 Afadzato and Tagbo Falls festivals on theme, "Harnessing our Tourism Potential for Community Development."
He said "Road infrastructure was cardinal to the accessibility of tourist sites and a game changer to harness the resources to the country's advantage."
He said the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts and the GTA is ready to partner any community that wants its resources developed which Liati Wote has already demonstrated.
He appealed to the District Assembly to provide financial and administrative support as well as create the enabling environment for the GTA and other private investors to participate in the development of the sector.
Mr. Nketia called on the traditional authorities and land owners to enter into partnership with investors in a public private participation in the tourism industry to enable them benefit from the opportunities that would be created.
He called on the Ghana Highways Authority (GHA) and the Ministry of Roads and Highways to intervene and "get the roads to these tourist sites fixed."
Togbuiga Gblemor X, Paramount Chief of the Liati Traditional Area said the two main reasons for celebrating the festival is to showcase the potentials of nature that was bequeathed the traditional area known as the 'Home of Afadzato,' the highest mountain with its flora and fauna in Ghana and to sell these enviable attractions to the country and the world at large.
He noted that aside the Afadzato and Tagbo Falls, there are other virgin tourist sites within the traditional area that needed to be developed and called on stakeholders to join hands to tap into the resource and upgrade these sites to derive its optimum.
"We want to develop and harness all our tourism potentials for development to give our people a better life."
He also appealed to the District Assembly to collaborate with the GTA to come out with a practical tourism development plan for the district and also take special interest in the tourism development efforts.
Togbuiga Gblemor X who bemoaned the nature of the roads appealed to the duty bearers to lobby to change the situation.
He called for increase in infrastructural development in the area especially guesthouses and hotels to meet the increasing demand of tourists who wish to spend days in the communities.
He called on government to support the the only second cycle institution in the traditional area, St. Daniel Comboni Technical and Vocational Institute with facilities to increase intake.
Mr. Godwin Dzansi, the Afadzato South District Coordinating Director said the benefits from tourism are enormous and has pledged the Assembly's support to the community in executing some of its projects to make the area a prominent tourist site.
The occasion which was chaired by Togbega Dabra VI, Paramount Chief of Logba Traditional Area, was attended by chiefs and queen mothers from Have, Tafi, Ve, Logba, Leklebi and Alavanyo as well as a cultural troupe by the Adjogbo cultural troupe from Djagble in the Republic of Togo.
The Afadzato and Tagbo Falls festival is celebrated by the people of the Liati Traditional Area and began in 1992.