Countdown to Easter celebration in Kwahu: Ghana Tourism Authority closes 6 hospitality establishments | Travel/Tourism
Preparation for this year’s Kwahu Easter has begun with authorities from the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) inspecting hospitality facilities to weed out illegal operators and substandard facilities preparing to host the guests during the festivities.
Following the inspection and monitoring exercise in conjunction with Nkawkaw Divisional Police, six of the seven inspected facilities were closed last Thursday for operating without a permit.
The facilities have failed to meet the requirements of Statutory Instruments (LI) 2238 and 2239 (Tourism Regulations, 2016) which are, respectively, “Registration and Licensing of Food, Beverage and Entertainment Businesses” and “ Registration and licensing of tourist accommodation”.
The facilities affected were the Debrah Guest House, Elsie Hotel, Cosmos Memorial Hotel and Daddy’s Motel and Pub, all located at Nkawkaw in Kwahu West Municipality.
Other facilities that have been closed due to their substandard nature also include; Star Gate Hotel and Flor-J Guest House located respectively in Nteso and Obomeng in South Kwahu Municipality.
GTA Eastern Regional Manager Frederick Adjei-Rudolph in an interview with the Daily Graphic said another 17 facilities in the Kwahu enclave were earmarked for surveillance as they were not eligible for the license. operational from 2022 during the annual inspection conducted last year.
He said that although the facilities do not meet the minimum acceptable standards for licensing, they would be licensed once the necessary flaws identified by the GTA last year were corrected, adding that if they did not did not, they would be closed.
Facilities include Royal Hill Hotel, Top Way Hotel, Asase Aban Hotel, Masada Hotel, Agya Ampadu Guest House, Hotel De-ship, Rosemma Guest House, Dubai City Hotel and D. Kyeremateng Guest House.
The others are House of David Hotel, Omari Serwaa Hotel, Okwahu Royal Hotel, Osafo Kantanka Motel (Main), Osafo Kantanka Motel (Annex 1), Osafo Kantanka Motel (Annex 2), Obroni Ba Guest House and Loop Hills Hotel.
Mr. Adjei-Rudolph said it was important for the party to maintain a good reputation and provide the best services in all aspects, including guest accommodation; hence the need to eliminate unqualified facilities before the start of the celebrations.
“Accommodation and catering providers are undoubtedly the busiest service providers at this event. In order to ensure mental health, quality service delivery and regulatory compliance of service providers in these areas , the Ghana Tourism Authority in the Eastern Region, in conjunction with the Nkawkaw Command of the Ghana Police Service has embarked on a consistent exercise of enforcement and monitoring of all tourism facilities. welcome to the Kwahu enclave from today to Monday, April 18, 2022.
“The drill will be very robust, efficient, fair and firm. The authority will maintain the oversight aspect of the drill before and during all Easter festivities. The regulatory mandate of the authority will be fully and strictly observed without any fear or favor by authorized persons and have identified agents to ensure that the thousands of revelers who will visit Kwahu during this Easter festival are not short of money when it comes to accommodation and catering services” , did he declare.
He added that as part of the monitoring, licensed facilities would also be visited to ensure that they were providing value for money services to revelers spending their Easter in Kwahu as most facilities see their prices increase during the holiday season.
“Enforcement officers will visit these facilities to ensure that they comply with all requirements for safety, health, service delivery and quality facilities as stipulated by law and comply with their respective classifications.
“Prices for hotel accommodation in Kwahu during the Easter festival, as we all know, are skyrocketing. The least the authority can do is to ensure that customers who will pay these high rates are offered good value for money, in terms of quality of service delivery and quality of facilities,” he said.
Mr. Adjei-Rudolph, urged all revelers coming to Kwahu at Easter to be very careful in their choice of accommodation; stating that “it will be in their own interest to only frequent facilities duly licensed by the Ghana Tourism Authority”.
The popular Kwahu Easter Party has been the most talked about event every Easter season and always attracts millions of people, both locally and internationally.
Due to the presence of the Odweanoma paragliding site on the Kwahu Ridge, the festival attracts huge crowds who also want to experience flying in the air.
However, the festival was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Momentum is gathering with the citizens of Kwahu preparing to greet and entertain the crowds as the festivities resume this year, hoping to spend their Easter holidays on Kwahu Ridge.
Observations made by the Daily Graphic during the inspection revealed that most of the closed facilities had no operating license, with others operating with an expired license. These settlements also lack adequate water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities. In one of the facilities known as the Elsie Hotel, a mattress lay on the bare floor.
Keys to closed facilities were handed over to police and various supervisors and managers on duty during the signing of a recognizance exercise. Customers at the time of the exercise were asked to leave the premises in the evening to allow officers to close their various rooms.
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