Oba Akran of Badagry, HRH De Wheno Aholu Menu -Toyi 1, has officially endorsed the proposed Boku Resort and Parks project which is the Brain child of Mr. Abiola Lawal, Managing Director of FlyBoku.com and Ashton & Dave Travels Limited, who himself is a prince of Badagry .
Mr. Lawal equally honoured the Royal Father as the FlyBoku Royal Ambassador for Tourism. The endorsement took place last Thursday at the Badagry Monarch’s Palace during a courtesy visit by Mr. Abiola Lawal and his team with a group of the journalists drawn from major news media in the country.
Presenting his speech, Mr. Abiola Lawal, with enthusiasm traced his family in Badagry to the Royal Father and Chiefs present, revealed that he is returning home after more than 25 years sojourn in the United States and his foray into various corporate and tourism business to contribute his ‘quota as a son of the soil to the growth and further advancement of Badagry and a strategic tourist destination in Nigeria’.
He explained that his vision to set up the Boku Resort and Parks in his home town, Badagry is the product of his passion for tourism, coupled with his extensive travel experiences to many parts of the world and his desire to transform his homeland into an enviable tourist destination with world class tourism traps and products.
“I’m passionate about tourism; both in investment and by association. Disneyland remains one of the world’s happiest places and for more than 50 years after the founder has passed on, people from all over the world keep flooding to that place.
“I recently was in a tour to four countries namely Jamaica, the Bahamas, Mexico and Cayman Island. At every stop, you see about 5,000 people come and buy local crafts, vests etc. When we got to Bob Marley’s Estate in Jamaica, we paid USD$50 to go in and when you are out, you spend another USD$50 or more. While in thess places, I told myself that there is nothing there that we don’t have back home in Nigeria. What Bob Marley is to Jamaica, Fela Anikulapo Kuti is to us!
“I asked myself, ‘What can I do my city, for my country?’ I am deeply concerned about domestic tourism. And this is the beginning of the launch of several projects and initiatives that would be coming out in the future”, Mr. Lawal assured.
He further assured on the the need for continuity in fulfilling his project, sayimg that it was necessary for him to be on the ground, have the backing and support of the Badagry Royal Father and his chiefs and the support of the various stakeholders.
Mr. Lawal, explaining that his initiative “is a massive investment”, equally revealed that he “has been in talks with potential partners for the laudable project within and outside the country”.
Anchoring his speech, he said that, “Aviation, transport travels have a unique connection. I have investment in aviation, and there is nothing that makes it impossible for helicopters to bring people from the airport to Badagry, which is just about 15 minutes!
Looking at the laudable project, you can’t do it alone. You need several experiences: construction experience, hospitality, media etc. in the end it is creating jobs for locals and people from other places”
Concluding his presentation, he requested for the prayers of the Royal Father.
Responding to his presentation, HRM Oba Akran, welcomed him back home, pledged his endorsement and support even as he charged him to be true and consistent with his dreams and see that the projects are actualized.
The Oba, with in support of his Chiefs, prayed for him as charged the Royal Court to accord Mr. Abiola Lawal every support he would need to see to the success of his project.
By Renn Offor