Monday, 5 June 2017
Too many roadblocks not bad for tourism, says Karikoga Kaseke
VISITORS to Zimbabwe must not be afraid of the roadblocks as they are there to “maintain peace” in the country, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive officer, Karikoga Kaseke, said.
Kaseke said he was surprised to hear that some tourists were being scared away by the heavy ZRP presence on Zimbabwe’s roads because the police were simply maintaining peace.
The remarks by Kaseke come after the Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi told journalists last week that he was going to take the issue of heavy ZRP presence on the country’s roads to the cabinet.
Mzembi said too many roadblocks were “chasing away” tourists, adding he was also going to call for an indaba on the issue.
But the ZTA boss said ZRP was simply ensuring “safety and security”.
He said the number of tourists coming into the country had actually gone up with about 2 million visiting last year.
“Please visitors do not fear for your safety when you come to Zimbabwe; why are people saying there are too many roadblocks in the country?” Kaseke told NewZimbabwe.com.
“These road blocks, to some extent, are also guaranteeing peace. The ZRP are renowned internationally for maintaining peace when they go on peace missions, our police always come out tops,” he added.
“The Zimbabwe we have is not the Zimbabwe that they (tourists) hear of through the international media. The Zimbabwe that they are hearing about on the international media also shocks us.
“For us we cannot form our own perception for our country, the Zimbabwe that we know is the Zimbabwe that is the most peaceful country. Peace is our selling point.”
Last year, a visitor exit survey (VES) released by the Zimbabwe National Statistical Agency said harassment by ZRP constituted the highest percentage of reasons why leaving tourists would not return or recommend the country to potential visitors.
Source: Too many roadblocks not bad for tourism, says Karikoga Kaseke (05/06/17)