The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Bayelsa State Governor on Tourism, Mr. Piriye Kiyaramo has called on Guinness Nigeria Plc, a subsidiary of Diageo Plc, United Kingdom, the world’s leading premium drinks business to join hands with the Prosperity Administration of Senator Douye Diri to promote the tourism and hospitality industry by sponsoring entertainment events in the state.
Mr Kiyaramo made the appeal during the conferment of patronship and award on the chairman of South Coast Lounge, a notable hospitality outfit in Yenagoa, Rear Admiral Thomas Lokoson by the League of Character Clubs, Nigeria at the South Coast Lounge on last Thursday, said by sponsoring such major events, Guinness Nigeria Plc will help in showcasing the skills, resourcefulness and the vibrant cultural heritage of Bayelsans and the Ijaw Nation in general.
The governor’s aide lamented that from creation in 1996, Bayelsa State had hardly enjoyed any meaningful patronage from corporate organisations in the tourism and hospitality as the case with other cities like Lagos, Port Harcourt Abuja, Enugu among others.
He expressed the readiness of the state government to partner corporate bodies like Guinness Nigeria to promote the cultural tourism potentials of the state with a view to attracting visitors and tourists to the state.
On his part, the recipient of the conferment of honour of patronship and chairman of South Coast Lounge, Rear Admiral Thomas Lokoson (rtd) thanked the League of Character Clubs Nigeria for the honour, described the honour as overwhelming, adding that having spent 35 years in the service of Nigerian Navy, he thought it wise to invest in the hospitality industry as a way of giving back to the society that made him who he is.
Rear said “the way one attends to his job determines how he would approach his own business, even as he enjoined the youths of the country not to relent but continue to gear up to take up political offices through ballot by contesting for elective positions at all levels.
In his remark, Chairman of Bayelsa State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Comrade Samuel Numonengi, commended the League of Character Clubs, Nigeria for moulding character and building the community.
Comrade Numonengi, while commending the Chairman of South Coast Lounge, Rear Admiral Thomas Jonathan Lokoson, for his philanthropic spirit and benevolence, also applauded staff of South Coast Lounge for their efficiency in service delivery.
Also, speaking at the event, Area Sales Manager West, Guinness Nigeria, Jonathan Unegbu promised to explore the business opportunities in the stste with a view to partnering with relevant authorities, including tourism enterprises in Bayelsa to promote the tourism hospitality sector.
Earlier, President General of the League of Character Clubs Nigeria, representing the International Age of Character Club, USA, University of Science and Philosophy, Swanananoa, Waynesboro, Virginia USA, High Chief (Tourist) Christian Kokoriko, said the league of the Character Clubs, Nigeria only honours persons of proven Character through recommendations from persons of high integrity.
Character Club, he said, is involved in moulding characters, adding that without good character, the society will remain underdeveloped because of poor leadership, resulting in bad governance.
High Chief Kokoriko who announced the donation a football trophy to the South Coast Lounge, also commended Guinness Nigeria for its leadership role in Africa, as a global brand.
While thanking the chairman of South Coast Lounge for redefining the hospitality industry in Bayelsa State through efficient service delivery, reiterated that Nigeria Needs good characters in public offices.
Dignitaries that graced the occasion include; Chief Mrs Victoria Agwu Kokoriko, National Director of Women Affairs/Protocol, League of Character Clubs Nigeria, Dr. Janet Y Ekpefa Abdullahi and the Assistant Manager, South Coast Lounge, Agearuba Peter, among others.