A professor at the University of Cape Coast has decried the state of tourism centres and facilities in the country, describing them as deathtraps rather than leisure centres.
Professor Francis Eric Amuquandoh observed the poor nature of the roads leading to these places, poor maintenance of the facilities coupled with the neglect of ministries mandated to address such challenges have deprived the country of the benefits it could reap from the industry.
Speaking on the topic “Reflections on the Leisure Situation in Ghana” at an inaugural lecture at UCC on Wednesday, he stressed on the need for bottlenecks in the industry, especially transport related, to be removed to boost patronage and revenue for national development.
“The road from Cape Coast Castle to Kakum National Park is about thirty minutes’ drive but it takes more than an hour. When you visit trip advisor, our roads have become the tourist attractions instead of the tourist sites”, he said.
Underscoring the importance of safety at leisure centres, Prof. Amuquandoh recommended the passage of a law to make it mandatory for all attraction sites and commercial events to be covered by insurance to address accident and related issues.
He also wants the special planning authority and Environmental Protection Agency ( EPA) should pay special attention to the engineering, design and safety measures incorporated into leisure facilities.
To increase leisure facilities in the country, he called for a deliberate state policy led by the northern development authority to address the leisure facility deficit in the northern part of the country.
He emphasised on the need for leisure to be seen as a right and called for leisure facilities to be made accessible to all people irrespective of their gender, ethnicity, age and income to help address the sustainable development goal five which aims at promoting gender inequality and reducing inequalities.
Parents and community leaders , he said, should be seen at all levels at the forefront of leisure participation to stimulate leisure interest in the youth and job avenues created by the government and private sector to enable them pay for their leisure.