EALA Wants Speedy Tracking of One Tourism Visa

The East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) is pushing for the introduction of the single tourism visa to boost a tourism sector in the region.

A report presented by the chairman of the Agriculture, Tourism and Natural Resources Committee, Mr Christophe Bazivamo (Rwanda), on Monday, Eala urged the Council of Ministers to fast-track and complete the study on the implementation of the EAC one single tourist visa which started three years ago.

The assembly also wants the EAC council to fast-track ratification of the protocol on tourism and wildlife management and for the EAC to provide additional resources for the Tourism and Wildlife Management Unit.

Ms Nusura Tiperu, Uganda's representative in the assembly, said it was time for the single visa because the region has vast tourist attractions.

"There needs to be more information and data available on tourism to ensure visitors benefit on the tourist facilities," Ms Tiperu said.

She urged the Council of Ministers to ensure the secretariat is well staffed and capacitated.

Mr Adam Kimbisa (Tanzania), said there was need to ensure inter-connectivity and infrastructure to support systems of the one single tourist visa.

Uganda's representative Mike Sebalu, hyrose Bhanji (Tanzania) and Isabelle Ndahayo (Burundi) supported the adoption of the report.

Currently sitting in the first meeting of the 5th session of the 3rd Assembly in Arusha, Tanzania, the assembly also said hotel classification in the region continues to face challenges which include poor planning in the construction modalities.

It urged the EAC member states to establish a mechanism for funds to support the initiative and enhance capacity building.

The assembly passed a report of the oversight activity on hotel classification and preparedness for a single tourist visa.

Source: allAfrica