What I experienced meeting South Africa and Sierra Leone Tourism Ministers

Hon. Tokozile Xasa is South Africa’s Minister of Tourism, the silent amazon behind the 9.5million tourists pouring into Mandela’s country annually.

Hon. Sidi Yahya Tunis is Sierra Leone’s Minister of Tourism, a young millennial who led his country’s post-Ebola rebranding efforts to become UNWTO’s fastest growing destination in the world.

Among others, these two have demonstrated that Age and Gender are not sine qua non to impactful leadership. Competence is all that matters. While the glory of the youth is their strength, the crown of the aged is indeed their grey hair.

🎢 Enu ose enu ose 🎢Ariwo ko ni music o🎢 Empty barrel lo ma pariwo 🎢 It’s not by mouth. It’s not by noise. Only Empty barrels make the loudest noise 🎢

Those are excerpts from a song by Nigerian musician, Adekunle Gold. Aside Xasa and Tunis, I also met other interesting dignitaries at the 41st Annual World Tourism Conference in Kigali, a beautiful event organized by the Rwanda Development Board in partnership with the Africa Travel Association, an arm of the Corporate Council of Africa.

With Namibia’s Deputy Minister of Tourism, Hon. Tommy Nambahu

With Judy Nwokedi, COO, Tourvest & Chair in the Human Capital and Remuneration, South Africa Tourism Board

Director General, Sierra Leone’s National Tourism Board

With Ross Kata of Expedia, Toni Ukachukwu of Afro Tourism, Judi Nwokedi and her son Chenoa, Daniela DaSilva of Expedia and Assistant DG to the South African Tourism Minister

Speaking on the panel, Evolution of Online Travel, with Cyrus Onyiego, Country Manager, Jumia Travel Kenya; Akua Gyekye, Facebook Public Policy Manager for Africa; Ross Kata, Expedia

With the Lagos state Acting Commissioner of Tourism and Culture, Hon. Adebimpe Akinsola, and her delegation from Nigeria – at the Genocide Memorial in Kigali

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