Saturday, February 26, 2011

Hospitality and peace are vital to Zambia - Rupiah

Hospitality and peace are vital to Zambia - Rupiah
By Christopher Miti in Chipata
Sat 26 Feb. 2011, 04:01 CAT

PRESIDENT Rupiah Banda says the hospitality industry is dependent on key infrastructure which the central government needs to provide.

During the opening of Protea Hotel in Chipata, President Banda said it was the responsibility of the central and local government to provide necessary infrastructure for the growth of the industry.

President Banda said the government was pleased to support the formal opening of the new hotel because of the socio-economic changes and benefits that would unfold in the district.

“Apart from the international standards of service to be expected under this highly reputed brand name, the hotel will provide an exemplary lead from which local hoteliers may learn a number of things about operating in the hospitality industry,” he said.

President Banda said the new hotel, built at a cost of K20 billion, represented an important phase for the hotel group’s expansion in Zambia.

He also urged Zambians to play their part in discouraging and opposing violent language and behaviour.

President Banda said that without conditions of lasting national peace, it would not be possible to plan and build.

“I would encourage you all to see to it that we cherish and uphold this divine gift of nationwide peace. My goal is for Zambia to achieve a better standing in the world. We will achieve this through establishing security, stability and prosperity for all Zambians,” said President Banda.

Chairman of Protea Hotels Zambia Mark O’Donnell said Protea Chipata was the seventh Protea Hotel in Zambia.

O’Donnell pledged that Protea would continue to provide quality accommodation.
Tourism minister Catherine Namugala said the country had seen accelerated development in the sector because of President Banda’s visionary leadership.

She said potential investors were always happy whenever they interacted with President Banda.

They have told us that they feel that their investment are safe in this country because they have met a President who is focused on economic development and poverty alleviation. Your Excellency, therefore it is in the interest of all Zambians that you lead this country beyond 2011,” said Namugala.

President Banda also presented two cheques for K5 million each to Chipata Cheshire Homes and the Network for Zambian People Living with HIV and AIDS.

President Banda also paid a courtesy visit to paramount chief Mpezeni at Laweni in Mtenguleni.

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