Ghana tourism authority clamps down on illegal operators

The authority has begun an exercise to flush out unregistered and unlicensed hotels, hostels, restaurants, chop bars, drinking bars and car rental outfits

The Ghana Tourism Authority has said it is set to commence a nationwide exercise to clamp down on all illegal operators to instill sanity in the tourism sector.

“Some operators started registering with the Ghana Tourism Authority. Somewhere along the line they stopped coming to our office. We thought it was because of the COVID-19 and its associated problems that’s why maybe they were recovering to come and continue the process. But what we see is people are not coming, they are taking us for granted,” the Bono, Ahafo and Bono East regional director of GTA Joseph Appiagyei told Asaase Business in Sunyani.

“We have been warning operators because we are regulated by the law, it is the LI that is regulating our industry. So, whoever wants to operate needs to have GTA licence, but a lot of them we have realise, are not having our licence and in view of that, we are also joining the nationwide exercise to clamp down on all illegal operators.”

He, however, added that unregistered and unlicensed establishments in the tourism sector exist in disregard to the tourism act and the only way they can continue to do business is to adhere to the laws governing the sector.

Appiagyei therefore called on both existing and prospective operators not licensed by the authority to get in touch with the GTA to regularise their operations. He added that operators who fail to cooperate would face the law.

He also advised patrons of tourism sector establishments to at all times ensure they do business with only registered and licensed operators in accordance with Tourism Act, Act 817 of 2011.

The Tourism Act, Act 817 of 2011, mandates the GTA to register and license tourism sector enterprises. The law stipulates individuals shall not operate tourism enterprises without a valid license isssued by the Authority. However operators in the tourism industry are not adhering to the Law.

Daniel Donkor

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