Tourism and Arts Minister Sylvia Masebo has appointed a new seven-member Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) Board to be headed by former Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) President and renowned dairy farmer, Guy Robinson.
Unveiling the new ZAWA Board at a media breakfast in Lusaka today Ms Masebo called on the newly appointed members to ensure that they assist government develop a strategic framework that will sustain the country’s wildlife and game management.
Ms Masebo said she is confident the new board that included two traditional leaders would be able to offer qualitative knowledge that will steer government policies on issues of wildlife conservation.
Other board members appointed includes; Tourism Permanent Secretary Charity Mwansa, Justice Minister Winter Kabimba, Ms Kasiya Kazembe from the Ministry of Finance, Mrs Anita Balletoi, Chieftainess Mwape of the Nsenga of Petauke district, Mr Younaso Mita, Mr Timothy Mushibwe and Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta of the Lozi people in Sesheke district.
She said once all legislative procedures were done by her ministry, the tourism sector would be the beckon to reckon with in terms of massive employment creation in the country.
Ms Masebo however, said ZAWA has in the recent years failed to tick due to what she described as selfish driven motives by some individuals.
The Minister has also sounded a warning that the clean up exercise in the authority will be extended to all districts in the country.
She also said the Patriotic Front government is committed to ensure that it works with local traditional rulers in the preservation of natural resources the country is endowed with.
Meanwhile, Ms Masebo has urged the Tourism Council of Zambia (TCZ) to ensure that it sets standards on how lodges, hotels and other institutions in the hospitality industry should operate in the country.
Ms Masebo also called on the association to articulate government policies in the tourism sector in the manner that would benefit the people of Zambia.
She further called on the media to highlight stories on the country’s rich natural resources saying once the sector is widely publicised, it has the potential to contribute positively to the economic development of the country.
Earlier, TCZ member Felix Mulenga reaffirmed that graduates from the hospitality schools in the country are not meeting the calibre of the tourism sector.
Mr Mulenga said there is need to realign the curriculum in order for the graduates to meet the ever growing demand in hospitality industry.