As part of the mandate of the Cross River State Ministry of Culture and Tourism Development(MCTD), to promote tourism and ensure quality tourism service delivery in the State, the ministry and the National Council of Museums and Monuments (NCMM), have engaged in partnership talks in order to build a museum culture in the State.
Addressing the teams from the Old Residency Museum, Calabar and Slave Museum, Marina Resort, at his office, the Commissioner, Mr Eric Anderson noted that the museums had recorded a decline in the number of people visiting them thereby leading to the uncertainty of the place of our history in the minds of the coming generations.
The Tourism Commissioner was impressed with the Marina Resort being managed by the Cross River State Tourism Bureau during a familiarisation tour of tourism facilities in Calabar.
The Commissioner said “all hands must be on deck to encourage people especially youngsters to visit the sites. The academic institutions need to also take advantage of this drive by encouraging learning out of the classrooms.”
Still speaking, Anderson said the ministry would do its best to ensure traffic returns to the museum by attending to the issues raised such as electricity, air conditioning, amongst others.
Responding to the Commissioner, the team leader and Curator, National Museum , Calabar, Mrs Evelyn Osuagwu, appreciated the ministry’s hand of fellowship extended to them explaining that it was a long time coming.
Osuagwu said the challenges are enormous but with the partnership she is certain things will change.
She updated the Commissioner of the efforts already on ground to keep the museum alive such as the monthly schools outreach program, the Calabar museum journal, vocational training for the physically challenged, the Calabar Museum Society, the International Museum and International Monuments, Heritage and Sites Day, amongst others.
Both parties arrived at new measures to reviving the museum culture such as building of a museum Library and Carnival museum, development of a museum tourism handbook, intensive strategized marketing and social media awareness.
He was received by the manager of Marina Resort, Mr. Moses Ogar, general manager, general manager, Cross River State Tourism Bureau (CRSTB), Mr. Omoregha and Mr. Eche Takon, Manager Corporate Services, CRSTB
also, present at the meeting were managerial staff of both organisations.
BY: ACHIANE ADAMS