17 December 2018


Department launches Tourism Month on a high note


Kamogelo Pooe


09 September 2016

Bokone Bophirima's Tourism MEC, Desbo Mohono, has called on South Africans to make tourism their everyday activity. Mohono was speaking at the recent launch of the provincial Tourism Month in the Vredefort Dome, a world heritage site outside Potchefstroom.

MEC Mohono highlighted some positive developments the tourism sector in the province has achieved.

She said the department is steadily achieving its Vision 2020 mission of becoming the fourth most visited province in the country. The province now occupies the sixth spot, one step up. The improvement, according to the MEC, is mostly attributed to intensive marketing of the province and its tourism products.

"We have improved in terms of tourists arrivals and we will continue to encourage tourists to stay longer. It is indeed a great feeling to record the success and that simply means more revenue and job creation. The success also tells us we are doing something right, and that is what we will continue to do," said Mohono.

She said her department was in the process of planning with municipalities in a forum called MUNIMEC, a quarterly meeting between municipalities and the MEC.

"Tourism happens within municipalities, which is why it is important for the department to plan and work closely with municipalities. Our plans must complement each other. That will also inform the budget and the marketing of our products across the province," she said.

Tlokwe Local Municipality Mayor Kgotso Khumalo, and chairperson of the North West Tourism Board, David Mogashoa, shared Mohono's sentiments on cooperative governance. They said through aggressive marketing and cooperation with the private sector, the province could achieve its goal of becoming the preferred tourism destination to both international and domestic tourists.

One of the product owners attending the launch, Gomolemo Seeri of Kopano Guest House in Ledig outside Rustenburg, said the marketing of the province contributed positively to the growth of his business. Seeri said he was currently offering a 24-room Bed and Breakfast business and was in the process of establishing the second one in Mogwase near Sun City.

"The province and municipalities are contributing positively to our businesses and we shall also continue to work hand in hand with them. I am personally grateful for the effort, especially the Villages, Townships and Small Dorpies (VTSD) concept. The venture has brought serious relief to some of us who own tourism products in villages. We have heard the call by the MEC and we are going to jump onto the bandwagon," said Seeri.

The Tourism Department will host a number of activities throughout the Tourism Month. Activities include honouring those who have performed and contributed positively in the tourism sector through the Lilizela Awards. MEC Mohono is also expected to engage potential investors on different platforms.