By Frank Meke
Apparently,in gracious mood and thankful to God, Lagos zone members of octopus National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA) gathered in Lagos yesterday to count their gains in a low key celebration marking the end of year trade cycle.
Led by its cerebral Vice President, Yinka Folami, the zone dubbed the “millionaires” structured down its high-end entertainment gigs, which usually dominated its end of year party for a low profile outing in difference for prudence due to the economic situations in the country.
Though unbattered and resilient, these travel trade professionals have swarmed through the trade turbulent tides, turning adversities into opportunities, frontly confronting their challenges, and leading great initiatives and efforts opening up new streams of incomes in trade logistics, tourism,hospitality and leisure.
Le’ ola Hotel, Maryland, Ikeja, their usual hangout place, was filled to the brim with vintage cars of the “millionaires” dotting the car park areas and overflowing outside the hotel encased parameters, signs that the trade money bags didn’t end up the year so badly.
National President of the association, Mrs Susan Akporiaye, who was the special guest of honour, spiced up the gathering and urged them to stay focused and remain resolute in the pursuit of enthroning a professionally driven travel trade business offerings, adding that the times must be navigated with the discerning spirit of the children of the biblical issachar, who were reputed to observe the times.
“Dream big,have a vision, write it down,be courageous, and run with it with temperance and courage and leave the rest to God”, the effervescent and beautiful first lady of Nigeria’s travel industry advised the cheerful trade promoters and marketers.
Lagos zone will hold the Elective Annual General Meeting of the iconic association mid next year, bringing to end one of the most profound, engaging, and excitingly successful administration of NANTA in the past two decades.
Indeed, raved up by the high stake leadership deliveries by Mrs Susan Akporiaye, who went through the NANTA administrative ranks to emerge president four years ago from the Abuja zone, no doubt Lagos zone is gearing up to stand in gap competivily.
How Lagos zone local elections will pan out, played out at the Maryland meeting as interested members took turns to fervently upvote their intentions with feverish acclamations by the excited “millionaires”.
Yinka Folami,the outgoing Vice President of the Lagos “millionaires”, told me he is leaving the beat head up and had kept the fold together and more focused ever than before, adding that his desire is to see a more united NANTA with young persons,measuring up to sustain the dreams and vision of NANTA’s founding greats.
Watch out for our special reports on NANTA elections, both at zonal and national structure. One thing is however certain, sentiments, tribalism,and egocentrism won’t survive the search for new NANTA leaders who must match or outdo the positive achievements of the Susan Akporiaye Presidency which will influence the measuring rubric to those seeking to fill leadership positions in NANTA at all levels.