Billionaire businessman Basirou Jawara has been speaking to the Daily Observer about his big ambitions for the country’s tourism sector in the next two years.
The Sabi born Jawara, owner of Fajara Hotel told this reporter that in the next two years, his plans are to become an international tour operator and to own a Gambian tourist flight flying in and out of Destination Gambia.
He was speaking in an exclusive interview last week during the familiarisation of facilities’ tour in the Tourism Development Area led by the minister of Tourism and Culture Benjamin A. Roberts. Jawara’s Fajara Hotel is opened for the 2016/17 winter season following a brief hiatus.
Jawara joined the tourism industry more than three decades ago and became the first Gambian to own a hotel in the country called Adonis Hotel, then Wadner Beach Hotel and bought over Fajara Hotel two years later.
He noted that more tourists are keen on visiting Destination Gambia in the new season but said inadequate flights remain the underlying obstacle.
“In this year’s winter season, Fajara Hotel, one of the oldest hotels in The Gambia is back to business with over 200 rooms with good quality standard service that meets the requirement of the Gambia Tourism Board,” he said.
He disclosed that he was inspired to join the industry during one of his visits to Nairobi, Kenya, where he saw most of the hotels owned by Kenyans. Thus, his visit to Nairobi, he said is a challenge to him and other Gambians to invest in the industry by building new hotels.
The business mogul applauded the minister of Tourism and Culture and his team of inspectors for taken their time to visit Fajara Hotel. “There is a good tourism and culture minister in charge and President Jammeh is one of the capable Presidents and type of person highly promoting the industry,” he concluded.
by Yunus S. Saliu