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4 Powerful Women Putting Nigerian Tourism on the Map

Ngozi Ngoka
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Written by Abraham Odhiambo

International women’s day 2023 is yet another auspicious event to celebrate all women across the world, much so in Africa. It’s an interesting one this time around with Nigeria on the map. Besides being a fashion, technological and creative hub in Africa, Nigerian women in tourism have done a great job in ensuring that the industry gets the recognition it deserves.

Even though their roles are concentrated in low-skill and low-paid areas, they have done impressively well in maintaining culture and tourism development. Women’s skills are more dominant in the accommodation sector, which includes food and beverage services, homestay services, hawking trade and working in the hospitality sector. Though seen as small steps, they provide a unique tourism experience for visitors. 

See Africa Today focuses on four influential Nigerian women who have done remarkably well in putting the country’s tourism on the map.

1. Ngozi Ngoka

Ngozi Ngoka

Ngozi Ngoka. Photo/ Hayche Network.

Ngozi Ngoka, Managing Consultant/CEO of Zigona Advisory, is one of the influential Nigerian women in tourism. She is a former Director General of the Imo State Tourism Board in Nigeria and advocates with a niche for Rural/Urban Tourism economic models, public/private sector tourism policies and sustainable frameworks for tourism development.

Ngozi is an expert in the development of tourism destinations and itineraries that have a strong cultural/rural or environmental character. Her recent projects have focused on the development of cultural and heritage routes/itineraries and on food and culinary tourism and formulation of tourism policies for some states in Nigeria.

She is currently the thematic lead for the Tourism and Hospitality Industries Thematic Group (THITG) of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG).

2. Dr. Belinda Nwosu 

Dr Belinda Nwosu

Dr Belinda Nwosu. Photo/LinkedIn Nigeria

Besides being an academic mentor and consultant, Dr. Belinda Nwosu is also one of the important contributors to the tourism industry. She made the IHI list of Top 100 Most Powerful People in Africa, which she says is worthwhile if the recognition helps promote learning and development among women in hospitality and tourism in Africa.

Dr. Belinda Nwosu, one of the influential Nigerian women in tourism, has spent over twenty years working in the hospitality space. She is an educator in the tourism industry and a faculty member of the Organisational Behaviour and HRM department at Lagos Business School.

3. Joy Agbakoba 

Nigerian women tourism Africa

Joy Agbakoba is the CEO of Travellers Haven in Nigeria. Photo/LeVogue Magazine

Joy Agbakoba, an Office Management and Secretarial Administration graduate from London Pitmans College, is among the influential Nigerian women in tourism. Joy is the CEO of Travellers Haven, a company dedicated to corporate travel, destination events and luxury travel.

She is also the founder of Women’s Business Arena A platform, a platform set up for women to network and provide goods and services to each other. Joy previously worked as personal assistant to the managing director, Special Ranging Unit of the Famous British Home Stores. She also worked as the chief operating officer (COO), West Hampstead Secretarial Services, and COO Ceejay Aupair Services.

4. Joycee Awosika 

Joyce Awosika is the founder of ORIKI Group, a leading tech-enabled wellness, self-care and personal grooming chain. ORIKI is the only all-natural personal grooming brand in Nigeria operating a luxury wellness spa chain with multiple locations and its own manufactured product line.

As the founder of ORIKI, Awosika has had the privilege of building a wellness, hospitality and manufacturing brand in the last seven years. ORIKI Group has opened seven subsidiaries – the ORIKI Wellness Spas, THE ORIKI Retail range, the ORIKI Franchise, ORIKI Manufacturing, The ORIKI Consultancy, The ORIKI Training Institute and UNWIND.

Joycee Awosika

Joycee Awosika is one of the influential Nigerian women in tourism. Photo/ The Guardian Nigeria News.

What are the Issues of Nigerian Women? 

Modern challenges that Nigerian women face include child marriage, domestic violence, female genital mutilation and rape. Another challenge women in Nigeria face is gender inequality. This is an ongoing issue with the country ranking 168th out of 191 countries in the Gender Inequality Index.

What are the Rights of a Woman in Nigeria?

The rights of women in Nigeria include the right to live free from violence, discrimination and slavery. They also have the right to be educated, to own property, to health, political participation, dignity and to earn a fair and equal wage.

What is Nigeria Known for in Tourism? 

Nigeria offers a wide variety of tourist attractions such as extended and roomy river and ocean beaches that are ideal for swimming and other water sports, nature ranging from stunning waterfalls, tropical forests and some new rapidly growing cities and climatic conditions in some parts.

Who are the Influential Nigerian Women? 

Nigerian female icon Joy Ngozi Ezeilo and Ibijoke Faborode were on the 2022 BBC list of 100 inspiring and influential women from around the world.

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About the author

Avatar of Abraham Odhiambo

Abraham Odhiambo

Abraham Odhiambo is a writer with interests in nature, travel, African safari and sports. I'm pursuing a bachelor's degree in Media and Communication at Egerton University.

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