I hope President Buhari is exploiting Nigeria's clout at the London summit to sell the country as a tourist destination in exchange for him eliminating insecurity

Ayo Akinfe

[1] As we enter August, the height of the summer period when tourism is at its peak, Nigeria needs to start thinking tourism. Due to Covid-19, many traditional tourist destinations cannot be visited, so we should be using it as an opportunity to fill that vacuum. President Buhari should be offering to eliminate Boko Haram, Fulani herdsmen, bandits, kidnappers, etc bu 2022 in exchange for the rest of the world adopting Nigeria as a major tourist destination

[2] His message should start with the Mambilla Plateau, which straddles Adamawa and Taraba states. It is arguably the most beautiful part of Nigeria and were it well managed, this area would fetch us billions in tourist revenue. President Buhari should offer to build hotels, theme parks, a railway line, cafes, restaurants, etc there

[3] Do you that the area bordering Cameroon boasts of wildlife like giraffes, gorillas, leopards, elephants, etc. We should have an internationally acclaimed wildlife sanctuary like the Kruger National Park there

[4] We also have the Koma people in Adamawa/Taraba area. They should treat visitors to their unadulterated culture wooing them with local cuisine and dances. In southern Africa, the San people do this brilliantly

[5] One Nigerian state governor should also be asked to look at opening a new kind of wildlife sanctuary into which he would import other exotic beasts not native to Africa like kangaroos, pandas and tigers. Just imagine the mystique this would create

[6] As a result of the recent fires in Australia, animals under threat include kangaroos, koala bears, camels, can toads, the cassowary, cockatoos, the echidna, emus, the goanna monitor lizard, frill necked lizards and the numbat. Their habitats have been totally destroyed by this fire and many of them face extinction. What stops Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State from offering to open a dedicated kangaroo colony in Sambisa Forest, offering to take 1,000 of these animals from Australia

[7] One place that has always fascinated me in Nigeria is Lokoja. For me, it should have the same mythical status as Mesopotamia as it is the confluence of the two rivers in the world’s largest black nation. Bearing in mind humanity came from Africa, why is Lokoja not a candidate for the Garden of Eden and the birthplace of humanity? At the very least, Lokoja should generate as much revenue as Niagara Falls

[8] One of the most beautiful places in Nigeria is the Matsirga Waterfalls near Kafanchan in Kaduna State. Governor Nasir El-Rufai should be looking to take out a loan of about $5bn to turn this area into another Ibiza, building a whole industry around Kafanchan in an attempt to generate at least $5bn annually from tourism

[9] Annually, about 80,000 Nigerians perform the hajj pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia. On average, each trip costs about $5,000. Nobody has been able to explain to me why the tombs of Usman Dan Fodio and Samuel Ajayi Crowther have not been turned into major tourist attractions for African Muslims and Christians. All those who cannot afford to go to the Middle East should come to Nigeria instead

[10] Governor Rochas Okorocha accidentally stumbled on the idea of building statue parks in Imo State. I want to see this idea expanded upon and us create something similar to Egypt's Valley of Kings. Build statues of African heroes like Amilcar Cabral, Franz Fanon, Patrice Lumumba, Thomas Sankara, Kwame Nkrumah, Samora Machel, Nelson Mandela, Chris Hani, Joe Slovo, Walter Sisilu, Sam Nujoma, Oliver Thambo, Ronnie Kasralis, Steve Biko, Winnie Mandela, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, Eileen Sirleaf-Johnson, Joyce Banda, Margaret Ekpo, Queen Amina, etc across Imo State