Organisers of Travellers Awards have announced the winners of the Tourism Awards for 2022 edition.
These are the people and events that kept tourism bubbling in Nigeria in 2021.
Without these great people nothing much would have happened on the tourism landscape since the lifting of the Covid19 lockdowns in Nigeria.
The List was compiled based on tourism activities in 2021 that can be verified.
The Awards will be presented on the 11th of March 2022 at Abuja Jabamah Wonders of NigeriaExpo. Travellers Award was instituted in 1996 by the Publishers of Travellers Magazine and Atqnews.com with the Theme “Promoting Excellence in Travels”.
The Top 5 Travellers of 2021
1. Bolaji Seun
2. Mariam Iyiola
3. Kingsley Nwachukwu
4. Cordis Marianuela Umeokoli
5. Ibrahim Makanjuola
1. Tourism Communicator of the Year
Andrew Okungbowa of New Telegraph
2. Tour Operator of the Year (Outbound)
Diamond and Pearls Tours.
3. Travel Agency of the Year
4. Hotel Man of the Year
Prof. Babalola Wasiu Adeyemo-Sultan
5. Farida Sagaya AngelStyle Tours
Tourism Supporter of the Year.
6. Ogbunike Carnival
Carnival of the Year.
7. Hotel Manager Of The Year
Danny Kioupouroglou, GM of Eko Hotels and Suite
8. Hotel of the Year 2021
Lagos Marriott Hotel ikeja
Tourism Promoters of the Year
Oguntoye Kehinde Oladele Igbo Ora Twin Festival
2. Cecile Mambo Doumbe
Cee Mambo, Abuja Food Tour
3. Balogun Olamilekan and the Way of Wonders for Amala Hangout events
4. Peace Iyare, Abuja
5. Jibola Oluseye
Badagry and Lagos Tours
6. Anago James Akeem Osho
Curated Tours of Nigeria
7. Bethel Moseglad
8. Ekwueme Godsgift Ebuka
South East Tours
9. Prince Wale Olapade
10. Taiye Baiyerohi Olayemi
News Agency of Nigeria
11. Balqees Olubunmi Olaniyi
Olabaf Tours of North West, Abuja and Akwa Ibom Tours
12. Kelani Abolaji Aerovessel
Lagos Cruises etc.
13. Oludayo Taiwo Gideon
Aeroport Tours to Osogbo etc.
14. Franklin Ihejirika
15. Olugbenga Omotayo Sunday
16. Omotosho Hakeem Olamilekan
Kwara State Tours.
17. Agboola Oluwafemi
18. Louis Nwadialo
19. Prince Uduak Pedro
Qua Tours Uyo
20. Dennis Great Okeke
21. Dr. Raphael James
22. Ubong Ekpe Okon
Akwa Ibom Tours.
23. Lucia Ikediashi
Lagos City Tours.
24. Tola Gabriel
25. Nanna Yakubu
26. Abiola Adelana
The Organisers had earlier announced some winners of the awards.
NAFEST, The annual cultural festival and events packaged by the Otunba Runsewe led Nigerian Council of Arts and Culture NCAC has been selected by Tourism Professionals as the Best Tourism event in Nigeria. This will be the first year in the last 5 years that Carnival Calabar will not be winning the award.
NAFEST was held in Ekiti State and attracted over 30 States who showcased their cultural and creative products. Tour Operators had familiarisation visits to Ekiti linking NAFEST to the Tourism Circuit in Nigeria.
Sterling Bank was unanimously chosen as the Most Tourism Friendly Bank of the Year. Since the bank showed its intention to participate in the tourism space in Nigeria it has not relented. Partnering with Lagos State to launch the Lagos Tourism Masterplan was its first major move.
It hosted the World Tourism day with the world famous Nike Art Gallery in Lagos. It has also partnered with FAAN to provide Wifi at Lagos International Airport. It has introduced loans for Tour Operators to source for tour buses. No bank has engaged the tourism community like Sterling Bank.
4 personality awards for the year 2021 were released. The awards were selected by the Elite Members of the Tourism Community and approved by the Publishers of Atqnews.com and Travellers Magazine.
Pharmacist Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf the Lagos State Commissioner of Tourism was chosen by members of the Tourism 100 Club and the Publishers of Travellers Magazine as the Best Tourism Commissioner in Nigeria in 2021. The Lagos Commissioner had engaged stakeholders and initiated trainings for Tour Operators and Creatives based in Lagos. Lagos state has become the benchmark for most states in tourism development.
Lagos State launched its Tourism Masterplan in 2021, that is an unprecedented feat by any state in Nigeria. She initiated the Community Based Tourism, CBT projects in the 5 divisions of Lagos. Lagos launched a Trust Fund that provides loans and grants to tourism practitioners based in Lagos.
Chief Allen Onyema, the Chairman of Air Peace was chosen as the Travel Personality of the Year 2021 due to his consistent performance in the Aviation Business. His Airline, Air Peace is the first airline to bring a brand new commercial passenger plane to Nigeria, since Arik Air and Virgin Nigeria more than 10 years ago. 5 Brand New Embraer E195 E2 aircraft were received by Air Peace for operations in Nigeria.
His Airline had been evacuating stranded Nigerians in many countries and became the official carrier of the Super Eagles. In 2021 he became the positive force for Aviation and Travel Business in Nigeria. His Pan Nigeria messages endeared him to Nigerians as a unifying leader. No wonder Nigerians rallied to support him in the impasse with the UAE.
The Tourism CEO of the Year 2021 is Turaki Nura Kangiwa, the Director General of NIHOTOUR. He was a breath of fresh air in the tourism arena in 2021 with events and trainings all over the country. He pushed the hand of government effectively in 2021.
He identified the absence of government in the private sector environment. He partnered with Tourism Associations, set up the Sector Skill Council, opened up new campuses of the Tourism Training Institute and anchored the World Tourism Day 2021. The WTD restored the role of government in the international event initiated by a Nigerian Chief Atigbi.
The Tourism Man of the Year is the President of FTAN Nkereuwem Onung. His election as the FTAN President was a unifying tonic needed by the Tourism Community riven by dichotomy and in fighting. His Election was almost unanimous as all the leading tourism associations backed his election.
He has since set out inaugurating Zonal Chapters and encouraging strong member associations. His mantra of “Strong Associations make Strong Federation” seems to resonate with members. He has brought together a team that promises to lift tourism a notch higher in the New Year.