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Hayat Blell Elects As New Gambia Hotel Association Chair

By Yunus S Saliu

Members of the Gambia Hotel Association (GHA) elected Ma’am Hayat Blell, the General Manager of Sunset Beach Hotel who is also the Honorary Consul of Malaysia to the Republic of The Gambia, as the new Chairperson of the Association, on Wednesday, 27th March 2024 during its Annual General Meeting held at Bakadaji Hotel, Kotu, Gambia.

Also, Mrs. Haddy Ndow Faal, General Manager of Paradise Suite Hotel, elected Vice Chair, Ms. Marion Foon Nyan, Executive Secretary of Gambia Hotel Association, Mr. Muhammed Jaiteh, Finance Manager of Seaview Garden Hotel, Treasurer. Other executive members included Mr Francis Njie, General Manager, African Village Hotel, Mr. Malleh Sallah C E O, Djeliba Leisure Group, and Mr. Bunama Njie. General Manager, Bakadaji Hotel, Mr. Aziz Khan, Owner, Calabash Residence, Mrs. Haddijatou Njie Jallow, General Manager, Ngala Lodge, Mrs. Kumba Bah, Asst. Finance Manager, Seaview Garden Hotel, Mr. Omar Dabor, Asst. General Manager, Metzy Residence, Mr. Nicholas Blell, General Manager, Senegambia Beach Hotel

Having a brief interview with her shortly after her acceptance speech, Ma’am Blell accepted the responsibility and called for the support of the general members in taking the association to a better and higher level.

She highlighted the importance of the association and hotels to the industry while dilating on the significance of the association in providing international standards of good service delivery especially now that The Gambia is about a month away from hosting the 15th edition of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Summit in Banjul.

The new Chairperson who has been in the tourism industry for over two decades and is also among the accommodation committee members for the upcoming 15th edition of the OIC Summit said the members of GHA are quite prepared for accommodating guests during the Summit and beyond.

As part of the accommodation committee member, she said the committee has assigned a team to visit nearly all hotels, apartments, or private villas by checking them to make sure that they all measure up to standards to allocate them to different clientele coming for the meeting.

The GHA chairperson has assured of continuous visibility of the members in making the association by working with the Gambia Tourism Board, and Tour Operators among other stakeholders.

Notwithstanding, she said a lot of marketing still lying with the GTBoard for the hotel industry to do better because GHA members are well experienced and are over forty “with lots of ideas and different specialties so we plan to work very closely with GTBoard to give our ideas in term of how we feel Destination Gambia image can attract more tourists.”

However, the new Minister of Tourism and Culture, Honorable Abdoulie Jobe, graced the GHA Annual General Meeting alongside his permanent secretary and director general of the Gambia Tourism Board and assured them of his office support.

“We are impressed to receive the Honourable Minister of Tourism and Culture Abdoulie Jobe who honored our invitation and graced our AGM. We are eager to work with the Ministry and see what we can do to push the Gambia further in the forefront of tourism .”

Meanwhile, Chairperson Blell highlighted some priorities for the association, which included bringing the association closer, having more ties with stakeholders, and ministries, and training among others

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Yunus S Saliu

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