from NYENGETERAI MHONDORA in Kariba, Zimbabwe
KARIBA, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWEAN authorities are determined to revive the tourism industry around the Kariba region, which boasts the world’s biggest man-made dam.
The area, in the northern province of Mashonaland West, has not been spared the decline in the tourism industry during years of economic decline and bad press.
Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndlovu, the Tourism Minister, is leading the process to revive the lustre of Kariba.
“I believe Kariba has huge potential to be a tourism hub if a few things are fixed,” he said.
The minister disclosed that in 1997, Kariba had more than 150 000 visitors through the airport but in 2003, this had dropped to just over 3 000.
Ndlovu recently held a meeting with stakeholders in an effort to resuscitate tourism infrastructure in Kariba.
“Other issues aside, the airport in Kariba should be spruced up,” he said.
“It is working now but it being an international airport, we have to work on it. I’m happy the Permanent Secretary from Transport gave the stakeholders some assurance that it is being prioritized,” Ndlovu said.
“We also discussed the issue of the state of the road leading to Kariba and again the response was very progressive. A lot will be done before end of December.”
The minister urged stakeholders to make local tourism products attractive to lure visitors.
“I’m happy as the Mashonaland West players have identified what they coined the Mash West 7 wonders of Kariba and they are working to deepen this diversification.”
Lake Kariba is the main attraction.
It is a double curvature concrete arch dam in the Kariba Gorge of the Zambezi river basin between Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The dam stands 128 metres tall and 579 metres long.
Lake Kariba is the world’s largest man-made lake.
– CAJ News