NTDC BOSS Takes Domestic Tourism to Osun

 By Wale Olapade

NTDC Lady BossThe Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Okunade Sijuade, Olubuse II, on Thursday, 30 January,  2014  at the Ife Palace Square, singled out the Director-General, Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mrs Sally Mbanefo for special prayers and royal blessings. Mrs Mbanefo who was the Special Guest of Honour at Oodua Festival 2014 which was packaged and organised by Otunba Gani Adams earned the special recognition and blessing from the Ooni of Ife for exhibiting diligence  at work and showcasing  passion at her duty post.

The Ooni in his speech pointed out that Mrs  Mbanefo  has demonstrated a unique quality and robust sense of responsibility since she assumed office which distinguished her as a public officer that has vision for the national mission. The royal father pointed out that he had kept an eye on the activities and acts of the Director-General since her appointment and has performed creditably well by living up to her promises and building up her vision for the nation.

L-R: Chief Promoter, Olokun Festival Foundation, Otunba (Dr) Gani Adams and Director General ,  Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation  (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo in a dialogue  at the palace of  Olubuse II, The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade  during the recently held Oodua  Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ile- Ife, Osun State

L-R: Chief Promoter, Olokun Festival Foundation, Otunba (Dr) Gani Adams and Director General , Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo in a dialogue at the palace of Olubuse II, The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade during the recently held Oodua Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ile- Ife, Osun State

L-R: Chief Promoter, Olokun Festival Foundation, Otunba (Dr) Gani Adams, Prime Minister of Oyomesi , Bashorun of Oyo, Chief Yusuf Ayoola and Director General ,  Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation  (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo exchanging pleasantries at the palace of  Olubuse II, The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade  during the recently held Oodua  Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ile- Ife, Osun State

L-R: Chief Promoter, Olokun Festival Foundation, Otunba (Dr) Gani Adams, Prime Minister of Oyomesi , Bashorun of Oyo, Chief Yusuf Ayoola and Director General , Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo exchanging pleasantries at the palace of Olubuse II, The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade during the recently held Oodua Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ile- Ife, Osun State

 

The  Director General ,  Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation  (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo with other dignitaries  that  visited the  Oduduwa Groove during the recently held Oodua  Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ooni palace, Ile- Ife, Osun State

The Director General , Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo with other dignitaries that visited the Oduduwa Groove during the recently held Oodua Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ooni palace, Ile- Ife, Osun State

Olubuse II,  The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade  praying for the Director General ,  Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation  (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo during the recently held Oodua  Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ooni palace, Ile- Ife, Osun State

Olubuse II, The Oni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade praying for the Director General , Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) , Mrs. Sally Mbanefo during the recently held Oodua Festival at the Oduduwa Square, Ooni palace, Ile- Ife, Osun State

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Ooni revealed that he was particularly impressed by the determination of Mrs Mbanefo to mobilise and kick-start tourism revolution in Nigeria via domestic tourism initiatives.

“I have monitored her talking about domestic tourism and I have also read about her visit to tourism sites all over Nigeria raising the consciousness of Nigerians to these wonderful gifts of God. And her presence here at the Source today participating in Oodua Festival is a living testimony of her seriousness of purpose, diligence at work and commitment to national duty and vision.”

The Ooni prayed fervently for Mrs Mbanefo, supplicating to God Almighty to grant her wisdom, equip her with strength, good health and grant her success in NTDC while predicting that there would be a greater role to be played by her  in the affairs  of the nation. “God Almighty will increase your wisdom, grant you good health, bless you, expand your coast, widen your thinking horizon not only to enable you make a success at this post, but  ensure you perform better than your predecessors and see you through to a greater responsibility in this country.”

The Ooni  who commended  Mrs Mbanefo  for  being the first Director-General charged with promotion of tourism to  identify with Oodua Festival assured her of the support of the ancestors of Yoruba land and also  invoked the spirit of Oduduwa who she came to honour to assist her in all her ways.

The Ooni counseled Mrs Mbanefo to hold on to God Almighty for strength, guidance and direction. “In all of these, I enjoin you to trust in God, hold on to Him. Always pray and put God first. Pray to God first thing in the morning, place before Him all your activities and return thanks to Him in the evening. With you doing this, the sky will be your stepping board.”

The Ooni who declared Mrs Mbanefo a Yoruba revealing that her father, Chief George Uwechue, SAN, the Owelle of Ogwashiku, has been living in Yoruba land for 42 years called on all Yoruba at home and in Diaspora to support her vision at ensuring the blossoming of domestic tourism in Nigeria. The Ooni lauded President Goodluck Jonathan for appointing someone who has the right attitude and posture for the job, adding that Mrs Mbanefo’s deeds, actions and vision since her assumption of duty at NTDC has vividly  testified to the fact that President Goodluck Jonathan never made a mistake by appointing her to oversee the tourism sector.

Mrs. Mbanefo  had earlier in her speech exposed  her rich knowledge of the Yoruba culture,  the Ife tradition, her domestic tourism vision  and  strides since she assumed office by visiting some pristine tourism sites  in Kaduna, Abuja, Cross River, Bayelsa, Lagos, Ondo,  Akwa Ibom and Port-Harcourt   for authentication, assessment and development. She expressed her gratitude to the Ooni for the fatherly  and royal blessing and divine prayers offered her.

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February 2014

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