THA squanders PNM earnings on tourism
MINORITY leader Kelvon Morris said the THA was failing to capitalize on the many gains made in the tourism sector under the reign of the former PNM-led administration.
On Wednesday, Tobago won Wanderlust Travel magazine’s most desirable island silver award at the World Travel Market in London, England.
Wanderlust Travel magazine editor and CEO George Kipourus presented the award to THA Chief Secretary Farley Augustine.
Wanderlust is one of the UK’s leading independent travel magazines. Each issue highlights exciting destinations and off-the-beaten-path experiences.
In a statement on WhatsApp on Friday, Morris said he was pleased with the Silver Tobago award from Wanderlust Travel magazine.
“I certainly agree that Tobago is actually one of the most beautiful and desirable islands to travel to.
However, he said it was important to note that this was just one of many prestigious travel awards Tobago has consistently won over the years.
He added, “This confirms that the strategies adopted by the previous PNM administration continue to attract international attention and deliver significant benefits to Tobago.”
But Morris claimed that the international tourism awards Tobago has received over the years have not resulted in any significant benefit to the island under the regime led by Farley Augustine.
“Looking forward, however, my concern is that with this administration, the rewards received have not translated into meaningful benefits for the island.”
Stating that nearly two weeks have passed in November, Morris said Tobago has yet to receive any cruise ship arrivals at its destination. He also noted that Virgin Atlantic no longer flies to Tobago.
Morris said that although Augustine led a team at the WTM “there have been no real tangible achievements that give hope that this administration can correct its poor performance in the short to medium term.
He claimed that even their efforts to bring Grenadians to Tobago for Carnival had failed.
“Therefore, while this (prize money) is good news for Tobago, Farley and his administration have nothing to celebrate on the cusp of their first anniversary when it comes to tourism.
“Rather, it is the efforts of the previous administration and the resilience of stakeholders over the past few years that have earned Tobago this prestigious recognition.”
Morris said the work of former Tobago Tourism Agency Ltd (TTAL) Chairman Dr Sherma Roberts and former CEO Louis Lewis and their respective teams should not be recognized.
“There is no doubt that the strategic roadmap that was implemented under the previous administration resulted in a continued gradual growth in tourist arrivals from 2017 to 2019.”
He added that the former administration had also pursued strategic product development initiatives such as the new ANR Robinson International Terminal to boost airline access and arrivals, the stalled Sandals project at Buccoo Estate and the Marriott hotel development project underway at Rocky Point to upgrade room. stock on the island.