The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has embarked on a four-day training for its inspectorate officers to build their capacity to improve standards in the hospitality industry.
The 65 inspectors were drawn from the 16 regions of the country.
They were taken through basic rudiments of inspecting tourism establishments such as general security and hotel security management, infection prevention and control and fire safety, review of registration, inspection and licensing process and service charter, inspection techniques, report writing, interpretation of architectural drawings and destination single window project (module 2) application.
The Chief Executive Officer of GTA, Mr Akwasi Agyemang in his address at the opening of the training in Accra yesterday, said it was important that Inspectors became abreast with the current digital trends in the tourism industry in order to achieve the goals of the Authority.
He said the GTA under the Tourism Act, 2011 (Act 817), was mandated by law to train, educate and sensitise tourism enterprises and inspectors to equip operators with requisite skills to be able to render professional services.
Mr Agyemang said the training was to ensure that, facilities conformed to standards and operators obeyed the laid down regulations that had been passed under the GTA Act (817) 2011.
He said they were not just embarking on the training of the inspectors but several players within the value chain such as taxi drivers at the airport, car rentals companies and their drivers, frontline staff at the various tourist establishments.
Mr Agyemang said the participants would also be educated on security tips that they had to adhere to at their various facilities, adding “coronavirus disease (COVID-19) taskforce and Ghana Health Service would also be here to train them on the safety protocols of COVID-19 to enable them incorporate them at their various facilities.”
Mr Agyemang noted that the various defects they had identified over the years were disability friendly facilities, issues of customer service at the tourism establishment and how to ensure that the facilities were kept at a certain basic standards.
“So we want to equip our inspectors as they go out there to be able to understand that if you go to, for example two-star hotel, these are the things that you need to look out for and whether they meet international standards,” he added.
He said GTA was working with the French embassy to also train inspectors of the GTA on basic conversational French so that synergies would also be provided at the facilities to make francophone brothers and sisters comfortable travelling into the country.
“Our focus this year is domestic and regional and we know that we are more or less surrounded by francophone countries so let’s get ourselves ready for that,” he added.
BY VIVIAN ARTHUR