Kenya Tourism plans to grow despite frequent Travel advisories

Wilhelmina Maboja

TigerKenya’s tourism industry will need to find a means of moving forward despite recent travel advisories against visits to the country.

“We followed up on the reasons that were trickling in with regard to possible evacuations, possible issues of travel ban, possible this and that. We are partners in the trade, with the British, America, Australia,” Lucy Karume, chairperson of the Kenya Tourism Federation, told CNBC Africa.

“We have been partners in good times and we expect them to remain partners even in the bad times. Yes, they have to look after their people but we also have to look after our people.”

Following recent bombings in the capital city of Nairobi and in Mombasa, travel ban and advisories have been issued against Kenya due to an escalating spike in insecurity that has been linked to terrorist attacks.

Karume added that Kenya’s tourism sector has since been displeased with the advisories, and suggested that communication between parties should have been had before the advisories were issued.

“Let us know what is it that you have, what you know, how we mitigate, how we work with you when things are down, how we work together. Suddenly in the span of 48 hours, residents [and] staff, are all sitting there wondering ‘what happened to the guests? Why have they gone? But we’re here, we’re safe, we’ve had no incidents recently,” Karume explained.

“Yes, we have been battling insecurity and I think we’ve been doing a pretty good job of finding out how to deal with that.”

Karume added that Kenya’s tourism industry nevertheless expects to utilise the partnership between Kenya and the other countries to deal with the country’s insecurity.

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Edition 61May 2014

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