When citizens of a country make regular trips to other countries, whether for business, healthcare or vacations, they gradually and indirectly transfer the wealth of their country to the host countries. Senator Ben Murray-Bruce claims to prefer holidaying in Nigeria to the overseas and has urged President Muhammadu Buhari and all governors in Nigeria to follow his route.
He made this daring but wise statement through a Facebook post, stating that the president and other Nigerian politicians should consider spending vacations in the country instead of travelling abroad. According to Mr Bruce, that move will help grow Nigeria’s economy and alleviate the dying state of the nation’s currency. Nigeria’s elected leaders are legally entitled to paid holiday and they just love to visit exotic foreign holiday destinations, thereby draining Nigerian’s purse and enriching those countries.
“But the world is changing. Nigeria is changing. And as Nigerians, we have to adjust our behaviours so that they make economic sense in today’s world. Instead of vacationing overseas, why can’t our leaders vacation at scenic and beautiful Nigerian locations such as Yankari Games Reserve in Bauchi, Obudu Cattle Ranch in Cross River or Mambilla Plateau in Taraba or even the Gashaka Gumti Games Reserve, also in Taraba?
“I have holidayed in these places and they are as beautiful as any holiday location anywhere in the world. Our economy is facing challenges. We need to be looking at non-oil resources and tourism is one area we can make an honest buck. But which tourist would come to Nigeria if our own elite refuse to holiday here? Consider the history of The US and The UK.
“Their leaders habitually spend their vacations within their nations. It is a rarity for them to holiday overseas. US President Barrack Obama recently returned from his vacation to Hawaii while British Prime Minister had his last vacation in Cornwall in The UK. Our leaders, be they the President or any of the 36 state governors, are the chief marketing officers for the nation and their states.
“Their presence in a local holiday resort or attraction draws the attention of the world. Since they have such capital, should they not spend it in Nigeria rather than abroad? And it is not just leaders who should so act.
“All of us should begin to patronize local tourist attractions. Tourism fetches South Africa over $5 billion annually and $1 billion in Kenya. In Nigeria, tourism is so insignificant because we do not make enough efforts to attract tourists. Our Naira is nose diving and the only way to salvage the situation is to #BuyNaijaToGrowTheNaira.
“My name is Ben Murray-Bruce and I just want to make #Commonsense!”