The Department of Tourism will this year collaborate with Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) to commemorate World Tourism Day.
The day, which is commemorated annually by the international community, is scheduled for Gaborone on September 27 under the theme: Tourism and Water – Protecting our Common Future. The theme would be in line with the United Nations General Assembly’s declaration of 2013 as the international year of water cooperation.
Briefing members of the media in Gaborone on September 19, department of tourism director, Ms Kelebaone Maselesele said the commemoration came at a time the country was facing serious problems of water scarcity and less rains.
Ms Maselesele said collaboration with WUC provided an opportunity to further highlight the shared responsibility that the tourism sector had with other stakeholders. In recognition of the scarcity of water as a resource and that tourism was a major economic sector and user of water, Ms Maselesele said it was essential for the industry to conserve the resource.
She noted that tourism had been identified as the second engine of growth after mining and stressed the importance of educating the nation about its value. “We can talk about water, but if we don’t talk about water conservation we would be fighting a losing battle,” she said.
|Fast facts: World Tourism Day|
|When was the first World Tourism Day celebrated||1980|
|Why have they chosen that date||This date was chosen as on that day in 1970, the Statutes of the UNWTO were adopted|
|2013’s theme||Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future|
Water, she said, sustained tourism in many aspects as its accessibility was vital to the running of most businesses such as hotels, restaurants, leisure facilities and transportation. Botswana Tourism Organisation, due to its mandate of marketing and promoting the country as a premier tourism destination of choice as well as promoting investment in tourism, will play a role in leading the commemoration.
The commemoration will start with a clean-up campaign in the Gaborone Dam catchment area the day prior to the commemoration. Ms Maselesele also told members of the media that the commemoration would commence with the convening of churches at the dam to pray for rain. Districts across the country will also hold events to commemorate the day.
Date: 23 September 2013